Make a Dream

A light at the end of a tunnel for so many sick children.

The Children’s Oncology unit and the Teenage cancer unit at St James’ hospital Leeds have been fortunate enough to be supported by Make a Dream right from the charity's launch in 1994. Over the years we have been constantly indebted to them for their generosity and compassion to our patients at times when families were often at their lowest and most vulnerable stages of their lives.

Make a Dream has granted dreams to many hundreds of children and teenagers suffering from cancer and treated at St James. In addition, Make A Dream funded the refurbishment of the Day Hospital waiting room and treats the wards and the clinic to special gifts each Christmas.

Our patients have enjoyed holidays, special shopping trips, computers, room make-over’s, film premiers, meeting football and TV stars, in fact, MAD has rarely been beaten on fulfilling a dream however quirky – and believe me they are often challenged to the limit by the things patients dream up during those long spells in hospital beds!

The dreams are, so often, a light shining at the end of a tunnel, something to aim for when chemotherapy and treatment are coming to an end, when life begins to return to normal and happier times are on the horizon.

Sometimes, it’s more appropriate to live out a dream during treatment, a special dream to bring happiness and excitement, in the midst of hospital stays and the confusion and anxiety of life being turned upside down by illness.

Sadly, on occasions, a dream can be a final request, but this is also important, a lasting memory of a special happy time for families to treasure of a terminally ill child.

Huge amounts of planning, administration, and of course enormous talent for fundraising make up MAD, and the whole parcel is gift wrapped with non- judgmental love, compassion, generosity, confidentiality and efficiency in fulfilling , and often achieving even more than our young people’s wildest dreams.

Thank you Francine, Stuart and the Trustees for all your work, may the light which you shine by your generosity and commitment be reflected for many more years to come in the eyes of these brave youngsters and their families who’s lives you touch.

Jean Baum
Charity Coordinator
Paediatric and Teenage Oncology and Haematology
St James Hospital
Leeds.