Little Aila finally gets to spend her Christmas at home!

At just five months old, Aila was diagnosed with Leukaemia and immediately started an intense course of chemotherapy in July 2022. She lived at Southampton Children’s Hospital for six months straight with her mum and dad. Her final cancer treatment was on Christmas Day last year. It was absolutely devastating for the new parents to watch their little girl fighting for her life.

Her first Christmas was spent in hospital away from home, friends and family. 

It was not the first Christmas new parents imagine, but they still managed to create special memories thanks to Starlight. 

“I was really upset about having to spend her first Christmas in hospital," says her mother, Roisin. "It’s just not what I planned; no mum wants to spend what should be wonderful memories with their child in hospital. However, when it came to it, Starlight helped make it such a magical day with all her presents that we all had a lovely day to remember."

Aila was visited by Santa on Christmas Day, who delivered lots of presents, and the hospital play team made a real effort to put a smile on her face.

This year, Aila will finally get to celebrate at home, and on Christmas Day, she will officially be one year in remission!

“We feel very lucky to be able to wake up this Christmas morning with our daughter in her own bed. Her dad and I have just bought her a toy kitchen and can’t wait for her to play with it as it was her favourite toy on the ward."

"We have so much planned for December already, including seeing the Christmas lights and lots of fun activities with her cousins and friends.”

Please help us bring the life-changing power of play to more seriously ill children like Aila in hospitals this festive season. 

Donate below to make a difference.

Donate to Starlight this Christmas

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could help children of all ages and abilities benefit from a Sensory Unit to relieve anxiety and stress.