28/02/2011 – Izabel Maciver, aged 7, from Bristol, has had her wish for her very own Strictly Come Dancing dress granted by Starlight Children’s Foundation, the UK’s leading wish granting charity for children with serious and terminal illnesses.
Diagnosed in April 2009 with rhabdomyosarcoma, a life-threatening form of cancer that occurs in children, Izabel, or Izzy as she is known to her family, had to undergo a gruelling course of treatment to fight the disease, which included surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
Izzy’s mum, Jayne, describes her daughter as “a really girly girl who loves glitter and sparkles, pink and purple and swirly dresses,” and when Izzy became very unwell and was referred to Starlight for a once-in-a-lifetime wish, she asked to have a dress like the ones that the dancers wear in the television programme, Strictly Come Dancing. Izzy drew a design of the dress she would like and the team at DanceSport International made it for her, making a dream come to life.
Jayne told Starlight: “Since being diagnosed, we have seen an amazing and incredible strength from Izzy. She has coped so well and has just dealt with everything that has been thrown at her. She has been through so much in the last year but has never moaned or been difficult. Giving Izzy this wish would be a way of showing her how special she is and the chance for her to be the shiny, sparkly little girl she truly is. Izzy having a whirly, twirly dress with sequins on and to see her dance round in it would be magical for all of us.”
Starlight arranged for Izzy and her family to come to the DanceSport International shop in Croydon where a very special dress was waiting for Izzy. It was purple, sparkly and a perfect fit and, to complete her new outfit, Izzy was able to choose a special pair of shoes and jewellery to match. Izzy and her family were then given a behind-the-scenes tour to see where all the dresses from Strictly Come Dancing are made, before heading to central London to take a ride on the London Eye and see a production of the Lion King.
After the trip, mum Jayne said: “The last year has been very tough and Izzy’s wish could not have come at a better time – we have been floating on a cloud ever since! Izzy is still completely over the moon with her dress and it has been with her everywhere, including Brownies, school and even the hairdressers!
“When Izzy was granted a wish, we knew it would be special but what Starlight did for us was beyond all of our dreams. It was truly amazing in every way. Saying thank you just doesn’t seem enough for the most fantastic, magical weekend Starlight gave us and for the memories we have, which will last forever. Thank you Starlight.”
Contact: Henny Breakwell
Tel: 020 7262 2881 #231
Starlight grants a once-in-a-lifetime wish for seriously and terminally ill children, restoring the magic and fun of childhood and giving the whole family happy memories to share, whatever the future holds.
Starlight also creates entertainment in every hospital and hospice throughout the UK. Sick children go to Starlight parties, laugh their way through pantomimes, go out on Starlight Escapes, play games and watch films on the Starlight Fun Centre, and enjoy the toys and puzzles of the Starlight Distraction Box. Happy children respond better to treatment and Starlight helps children to forget about their illness and simply have a bit of fun.
You can make a donation online or by calling us on 020 7262 2881. For every £1 you donate, Starlight can assure you that 91p goes towards helping very ill children. To refer a child for a wish, simply complete our wish referral form.