Charity appeals for help to fund neuroblastoma treatment for South Otterington pupil Gaby Alderson

Darlington and Stockton Times: CHARITY APPEAL: Gaby Alderson, of South Otterington, near Northallerton CHARITY APPEAL: Gaby Alderson, of South Otterington, near Northallerton

A CHARITY dedicated to helping children access life-saving treatment for an aggressive cancer has appealed for donations to help an 11-year-old girl battling the disease.

Ahead of a fundraising cycle ride and concert for Gaby Alderson, the Neuroblastoma Children’s Cancer Alliance UK (NCCA) said it was backing a £500,000 drive to help fund treatment for the pupil at South Otterington Primary School, near Northallerton, should she relapse.

Gaby was diagnosed with stage 4 MYCN-amplified neuroblastoma last September after her mother, Vicki, who comes from Darlington, noticed a dip in her energy levels.

She has undergone rounds of chemotherapy, but a high percentage of children with high risk neuroblastoma will relapse and some children will not respond to therapy.

NCCA said in the event of a relapse there remains no standard treatment path to follow, and clinical trials abroad are often being the best option as none are available on the NHS.

The charity’s chief executive, Bettina Bungay-Balwah, said it was working tirelessly to raise funds for new UK trials and bring promising international treatments to the UK.

She said: “I would urge anybody reading this to give what they can to help Gaby beat this aggressive cancer.”

To boost the fund, landscape gardener Mark Stokes is preparing to cycle 110 miles before performing a show with his punk band at South Otterington village hall on Saturday (April 5).

Mr Stokes, 39, will be joined on the ride across the Yorkshire Dales by fathers of pupils at the school, Mike Metcalfe, Dave Askew, Martin Flannigan and Richard Allen, and local bands Sugar Town and Lions For A Day will also be feature at the show, which will include a hot supper and a cake auction.

To donate, visit justgiving.com/NCCAUKgabriellealdersonsjourney, text GABR78 to 70070 or visit justgiving.com/RollToRock1.

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