Joanna got in touch with us in September. She was helping to organise a fundraising event in memory of her friend Karen’s son, Sam, who sadly passed away on 19 April, 10 days after his 3rd birthday.

This was the first time Joanna had done anything like this and getting the community together was a great achievement.  The hall was packed, a day filled with fun events - a cake stall, raffle, face painting, glitter tattoos, hand treatments, books, toys, children's activities and much more. We are so grateful for everyone who helped with and supported the event.  Here, Karen, Sam's Mummy, tells the story of her beautiful and brave boy Sam and more about the fundraising they have done as a family, raising thousands of pounds for Neuroblastoma UK. 

‘I’m Sam’s Mummy. Our gorgeous boy was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at the age of 16 months. We were totally devastated, still are and always will be. He fought so very hard for 21 months, but he became a star on 19th April, just 10 days after his 3rd birthday. He was a very caring, fun loving little boy who loved his tractors, trains, planes, nee nahs, football and splashing in muddy puddles. Above all, he loved his family and friends and we all love him.

Sam fought a 21 month battle and suffered constant horrific pain in the last 6 weeks of his life. If we can do anything to stop another child and their family going through that.... ‘


Sam's Beads of Courage

The Beads of Courage programme helps children to take ownership of their journey and to make sense of the experience they are going through in a very visible and tangible way. 

Karen tells us that Sam -

"... got 1 bead for each act of courage when he had specific treatments, tests, operations, inpatient stays, chemo, etc.  ...As you can see, there are a lot of beads - a lot of courage."

The Beads of Courage programme in the UK is run by Be Child Cancer Aware - read more about it on their website.

Karen has raised a wonderful amount for Neuroblastoma UK, setting up Sam's tribute page https://samuelgeorge-hamblen.muchloved.com/ with all donations going to our charity.  In September, Karen did the Shine walk for Cancer Research UK, a team of 24 called 'Shine for Sam'.  Continuing into 2018, Karen’s brother, Graham, has his name down to run for Neuroblastoma UK in the Great North Run.