Fife charity LoveOliver moves into Edinburgh to support families living with childhood cancer

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Fife childhood cancer charity, LoveOliver, has opened a new base in Edinburgh in order to support families who are living with childhood cancer by providing them with healthy and nutritious meals.

It is now in moved into The Howat Hub’s cafe located across the road from the Royal Hospital for Children & Young People (RHCYP) in Edinburgh’s Little France.

The cafe, which is called LoveOliver @ The Howat Hub, offers a safe space for families to access food as this can sometimes be a problem when their children are in hospital.

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The hub is run by the charity, Children with Cancer & Leukaemia Advice & Support for Parents (CCLASP).

Gordon Murdie and Jennifer Gill outside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.Gordon Murdie and Jennifer Gill outside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.
Gordon Murdie and Jennifer Gill outside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.
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Based in the capital and established in 1994, CCLASP helps children and teenagers suffering from cancer or leukaemia in Scotland.

LoveOliver was founded in 2011 by Jennifer and Andy Gill after the death of their son, Oliver, who was diagnosed with a very rare and aggressive form of cancer – a malignant rhabdoid tumour at just a few days old.

Inside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.Inside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.
Inside LoveOliver @ The Howet Hub.

Despite thriving through intensive chemotherapy, Oliver passed away peacefully at home on Christmas Day 2010, aged just 24-weeks-old.

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Since LoveOliver’s creation, the charity has been committed to funding research into childhood cancers as well as providing food for families from all over Scotland who face long stays at hospital while their children are being treated.

Jennifer Gill, co-founder, said: “We feel very privileged to have been offered a partnership in The Howat Hub.

"This amazing facility has been formed through a collaboration between The Howat Foundation and Edinburgh-based childhood cancer charity, CCLASP.

"The hub is incredible. When we were contacted to see if we would like to take over the cafe we were delighted to say yes.

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"At LoveOliver we are passionate about providing food for families as we know how difficult it can be for families to access it when their child is in hospital.”

The Fife charity has been providing meals for families at the hospital for the last four years and have a freezer in the oncology ward where parents can access free food.

"As families come from all over Scotland, and sometimes have to stay for several months in the hospital, they may find it hard to get access to proper food,” Jennifer said.

"Now, if families have a chance to leave the ward, they will have a place close by to sit down, relax, and have a proper meal.

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“They are supported not only with food but in many other ways- the hub is state of the art and there are many people all working together for oncology families.”

Gordon Murdie, centre manager at the hub, said: "We are delighted to welcome LoveOliver to The Howat Hub.

"It is a charity with shared aims and purpose.

“With this innovative collaboration, the new centre situated just across the road from the Sick Kids (RHCYP) is developing into a warm, welcoming place providing support, wellbeing, recreation and get-together services for families on their cancer journey as well as becoming almost a second home to medical professionals and other similar charities.

“This is a landmark collaboration in a landmark centre."

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