The family of a four-year-old Sheffield girl battling a brain tumour have told how their world ‘fell apart’ when she was diagnosed.
Katie Froggatt, from Handsworth, had just started school when her parents received the earth shattering news, and she is now undergoing radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
Her friends and family are trying to raise at least £10,000 to help cover basic living costs and provide some treats for Katie and her siblings - and they have been blown away by the response so far.
Since Little Katie’s aunt, Katie Spick, launched the crowdfunding appeal with family friend Claire Pitcher, over £5,000 has been donated online, a local pub has chipped in with around £1,000 extra and more fundraising events are planned.
Katie senior said the family were incredibly touched by the support they had received and the money would make a huge difference.
“Katie’s been so brave and done so well since she was diagnosed, and we’re all really proud of her,” she said.
“We want to raise as much as we can to make things a little bit nicer and a little bit easier for her and the family.
“They should be able to go out and have fun together without worrying about paying the gas bill.
“This has been a hard time not just for Katie but for her big sister and brother too, and they all deserve some treats.
“We’re absolutely gobsmacked by all the support, and we’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who’s helped.”
Little Katie’s mum Stacey and dad Ben first became worried when Katie developed a problem with her right eye, which her aunt said had ‘turned in’, towards the end of September.
After initially being told by a doctor there was nothing to worry about, her mum took her to A&E, and a scan revealed she had a tumour the size of a plum.
“She had an MRI scan on the Friday and that evening our world fell apart when we received the news,” said Katie.
“She had surgery the following Monday and there was a five-week wait to find out the full extent before we were told she has grade 4 glioma, which is an aggressive form of brain cancer.
“Katie's been amazing. She’s a massive Pink fan and when we go to hospital for treatment she always has ‘So What’ blasting out of the car because it’s her get up and dance song, which is guaranteed to put a smile on her face.
“She loves the lyrics ‘I'm still a rock star, I got my rock moves’, which sum up her approach to life.”
Little Katie has just started the third week of a six-week course of radiotherapy at Weston Park Hospital and she is also undergoing low-dose chemotherapy before beginning high-dose treatment which will last for a further 12 months next year.
Her aunt said staff at Weston Park and Sheffield Children’s Hospital had been amazing, and she also praised The Sick Children's Trust which provides accommodation in Treetop House for young patients’ families.
Another big supporter has been Leedham’s Legacy, which was set up by Caroline Leedham in memory of her late husband Jason, who died of cancer two years ago, aged 45.
It is raising money to pay for a summer house at little Katie’s home where she and her siblings can go and ‘chill out’ together.
The Anglers Rest pub has raised around £1,000 by auctioning off items including boxing gloves signed by Kell Brook, and The Cross Keys hotel in Handsworth is hosting a fundraising day on Sunday, December 9, with comedy, music and more.
To donate, visit the Baby Katie’s Fund page at JustGiving.