Charity hits £250,000 milestone

Jennifer& Andy Gill with baby Oliver
Jennifer& Andy Gill with baby Oliver

A Leven-based charity born out of tragedy has reached a new milestone, raising more than £250,000 in just four years.

LoveOliver was started by Andy and Jennifer Gill in 2011 following the death of their son Oliver on Christmas Day 2010, at just 24 weeks.

Oliver was born with a rare and aggressive form of cancer, and now Andy and Jennifer help youngsters going through cancer treatment, their families and research into the disease.

The achievement means LoveOliver will be able to fund a fourth year of research into childhood cancer by a PhD student at Newcastle University. The charity has already funded two-thirds of this first three years and will now give another £18,000 to support his fourth year.

The couple have already donated £100,000 to childhood cancer research including £30,000 for research into the type of cancer Oliver suffered from, and another £10,000 to lymphoma and leukaemia research.

The couple also provide practical support to families at Edinburgh’s Royal Hospital for Sick children and Yorkhill Hospital in Glasgow, giving every family a supermarket voucher to help towards living costs along with financial grants starting at £250, along with providing games, crafts, books and teenage gift packs for Ward 2 in Edinburgh, and has donated appliances and furniture to the Edinburgh CLIC Villa.

Andy and Jennifer explained why they had taken on such a challenge, working out of a cupboard in their home: “Part of our mission is to raise awareness of a horrendous illness that is not as rare as people think.

“We need as many people as possible to join us in the fight against childhood cancer.”