Cancer survivor, 14, bids for charity fund

W42331H13 Gemma Flowers gets support from friends, back left to right, Sahar-re-Betteridge, 14, Geogina Samuel, 14 and Jade Howick, 14, at Sir Robert Woodard Academy in Lancing for her latest fundraising campaign
W42331H13 Gemma Flowers gets support from friends, back left to right, Sahar-re-Betteridge, 14, Geogina Samuel, 14 and Jade Howick, 14, at Sir Robert Woodard Academy in Lancing for her latest fundraising campaign
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A STUDENT who won her battle with leukaemia is now raising money to help other children suffering from cancer.

Gemma Flowers, 14, has joined her mum Gill as a helper with Leucan, a charity supporting families living in the area from Shoreham to Chichester.

The group was first set up in 1981 by parents of children attending Southlands Hospital in Shoreham and now works with families introduced directly from Worthing Hospital.

It is run by parents whose children have had cancer and provides both financial and emotional support for children diagnosed with leukaemia, cancer or bone marrow failure.

Gill said: “I am so proud of her efforts for other children and was truly amazed by her courage during treatment.

“She wants to be a nurse and I can see her doing that with her determination.”

The family, who live in Berriedale Drive, Sompting, was proud to see Gemma win the courageous youngster award in the Herald & Gazette’s Community Stars 2009. Gill explained Gemma was diagnosed that year and finished treatment in July 2011.

“As a way of celebrating, she asked for a party which we combined with her 13th birthday and she asked her friends who wanted to buy her a present to help her raise money for charity instead,” Gill added.

Gemma went on to complete the Race for Life, despite damage to her knee from steroids.

Her latest effort is a bid for up to £3,000 from the Lloyds Bank Community Fund.

Gill has worked for the bank for more than 30 years and was encouraged to nominate a charity for the fund this year.

Leucan has now been shortlisted for the Adur area, along with Shoreham Rugby Club and 2nd Southwick Scout Group.

The two groups with the most votes in each community area will receive £3,000, with £300 given to the other two.

Leucan provides new members with a gift, such as a laptop for the child to keep in touch with friends and family. Gill said the gift amount had had to be halved to £200 this year but the full fund donation would mean it could go back up again.

Votes can be made in person at the branches in Shoreham, Southwick and Lancing, or online via www.lloydsbank.com/communityfund by Friday, November 1.