A young Poole girl, who beat cancer appears as a ballerina to help Cancer Research UK and Channel 4’s new fundraising campaign.
Bella Phillips, four, plays a starring role on the campaign’s website. Dressed as a ballerina, Bella is holding a bright red arrow representing the need for everyone to take a stand against cancer. Stars including, Gwyneth Paltrow and Davina McCall, are supporting the campaign called Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C).
Channel 4 will support the campaign on-air for a week next month, culminating in a fundraising extravaganza on Friday, October 19.
A video clip of Bella with her grandfather, Charles Leeks, a chartered engineer from Canford Cliffs , is also part of the campaign.
Now Bella’s mum, Sian, is urging people to raise funds for vital research by standing up to cancer.
Bella was two and a half when she was diagnosed with clear cell sarcoma, an incredibly rare childhood cancer of the kidney – around four children are diagnosed each year in Britain.
She faced nine months of gruelling chemotherapy and three operations, including 10 hours of surgery to remove one of her kidneys where a tumour the size of her head, weighing over a kilogram was found.
Bella has been in remission since February 2011 and she has just started at Lilliput First School .
Sian, a teacher at Edwards RC C of E School in Poole, said: “We were devastated when Bella was diagnosed.
“But, thanks to research, she is still here. We are so grateful for the treatment that saved her life.
“Sadly, not everyone survives. That’s why we want to do all we can to get everyone in Dorset to Stand Up To Cancer.”
Helen Johnstone, Cancer Research UK’s spokesperson for Dorset, said: “One in three people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some point. Thanks to the incredible progress that’s been made in the last 40 years, more people are surviving than ever.
“But there’s still so much more to do. It’s not just technology or knowledge that we need – it’s funding.
“We’re entering a ‘golden age’ of cancer research and every pound takes us a step closer to achieving our goal to beat it.
“By boosting funding right now, the best research teams will be able to develop new treatments, bring cures faster and save more lives.”