The Robbie Anderson Cancer Trust was set up in December 2005 by 13 year old Robbie to improve the quality of life for young people spending long periods of time on the children’s cancer ward.
Robbie knew his cancer was terminal and facing his second (and last) Christmas in hospital, he set about fundraising for a large plasma tv screen for his ward. He wanted the children on the oncology ward to be able to do what everyone else was doing – playing games and watching Christmas films with their families. On December 24th it was fixed to the wall in the Day Room. Sadly, ten weeks later, Robbie passed away.
Robbie’s time in hospital was made so much worse by the lack of any facilities for his age group – Robbie was 12 years old when he went into hospital. The focus was on much younger children, down to infant-sized tables and chairs in the Day Room and not much else but Disney DVD’s to watch. While his life hung in the balance he was placed either in a room with Mr Men mobiles hanging from the ceiling and Harry Potter flying around the walls or in a crowded 6 bedded ward decorated with cartoon characters. The old fashioned TV’s on tables battled for space with life-saving blood products and chemotherapy machinery. There was absolutely no privacy for either children or parents. This, coupled with a sense of being in a nursery situation Robbie found hard to bear. Robbie’s legacy was a Trust that aimed to provide an environment where all children could be treated in age-appropriate surroundings.
Cancer is a battle that must be fought on all fronts – the psychological fight is in many ways as important as the physical care. With a huge amount of support from the people of Leicestershire and beyond The Robbie Anderson Cancer Trust was able to make a significant contribution to a dedicated teenage cancer ward and age-appropriate facilities throughout the children’s oncology ward at LRI. This has made a huge difference to the young people who are undergoing treatment now, giving a psychological boost that cannot be underestimated. It would have made such a difference to Robbie and he would be so very proud to know what his charity has helped to achieve.
This Trust is pledged to continue to improve the quality of life for all young people fighting cancer in the Leicestershire area.
To raise funds to enable us to support the children’s oncology ward with recreational comforts, games, IT and outings.
To educate: To encourage all who are able to give blood and/or platelets. The last few months of Robbie’s life were totally dependent on these products and we thank all those who gave then and give now.
To raise awareness of the Anthony Nolan Register which matches up people who need bone marrow transplants with suitable donors from across the world – you could save someone’s life when you register.
To be “self-aware” – to have the confidence to seek help if you have any health worries, however small they may be.