Somerset Community Services team pulls together to raise life-changing funds for colleague’s son

29th May 2024 - Written by Brunelcare

Reading time: 3 minutes

Our Community Services team, based in Somerset, has come together to support one of their colleagues whose 5-year-old son, Jack, has been diagnosed with Stage 4 High Risk Neuroblastoma Cancer.

The care team have been donating funds to ‘Jack’s Journey’ to raise money for Jack to have life-prolonging treatment in America. Jack’s GoFundMe page, set up by his Mum, Sarah, has already raised a huge £93,000 in a few months, meaning Jack could be well on the way to receiving his life-prolonging treatment.

Sarah, a Community Carer who has worked at Brunelcare for over a decade alongside her mother-in-law, Tracy, who has worked with us for more than 20 years, has given thanks to Brunelcare for contributing funds for their son and grandson, and for all the support offered during Sarah’s hospital stays.

Sarah said: “It was the middle of January 2024 and I noticed Jack was limping when I picked him up from school. I took him to the doctor twice and was told it was likely to be a viral infection irritating the hip and it should get better. By the end of January, his pain had gotten worse so I took him to A&E two days in a row. On the second visit, he had a blood test, and then we were sent to Bristol Children’s Hospital for tests and scans. Sadly, on 1st February 2024, we had an MRI scan that found a tumour above his right kidney. Jack then had a biopsy of the tumour and on 15th Feb, Jack was diagnosed with stage 4, High Risk Neuroblastoma Cancer. We were devastated.”

Sarah has been visiting the hospital weekly so Jack can receive rounds of Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy. Soon, Jack will have surgery to remove the tumour and will also need a stem cell transplant, totalling 18 months of treatment.

If Jack’s NHS treatment is successful, he currently has a 40-50% chance of survival, however, if he relapses, the chances decrease to just 5%. Sarah is hoping to raise £250,000 for maintenance treatment that is not available in the UK. This treatment lowers the possibility of a relapse occurring and gives Jack a better chance of survival if it does return. The money raised will be used for the treatment itself, alongside multiple trips to America over a two to three-year period which will cover flights, insurance, accommodation and medical bills. Jack needs to complete his NHS treatment and have no evidence of disease, then travel very soon after to begin his treatment in the US.

Sarah said: “The weekend Jack was diagnosed I was meant to be working. My Team Leader, Maureen, was extremely supportive and said not to worry about a thing, she told me, we’ve got it covered and it was music to my ears. The Somerset Operations Manager also said ‘that she will of course keep my job open for me when I return.’ I still work at Brunelcare when I can but they understand my situation and have been so, so supportive and I know I have job security.”

Mandy Curran, Somerset Operations Manager, said: “We are wishing Jack the most speedy recovery there is and our Somerset team are coming together to be there for Sarah and Jack. We have all been contributing to his GoFundMe Page and staff have been attending some of the many fundraising events that have taken place. We are supportive of the fact that Sarah has other priorities right now. She’s a fantastic carer to our wonderful clients and is a very valued member of the team; we can’t wait to have her back when she’s ready.”

Jack said: “I hope I get well soon. I miss going to school and playing with my friends.”

Click here to donate to Jack’s Journey