Oundle girl Lana raising money for the hospital which saved her life

Lana Leeson ,4, who suffers from a rare blood disor but will be taking part in a sponsored walk
Lana Leeson ,4, who suffers from a rare blood disor but will be taking part in a sponsored walk
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A LITTLE girl is raising money for the hospital which carried out a life-saving operation on her when she was a baby.

Lana Leeson was just 10 months old when she underwent a bone marrow transplant at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London to help cure her of a rare blood disorder, diagnosed when she was nine-weeks-old, called hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis.

Lana had the gruelling operation in November, 2007, after an anonymous donor came forward, and she was well enough to return home for Christmas and her first birthday in January, 2008.

The Mercury had previously appealed for potential donors to come forward.

Now four-and-a-half, Lana is the picture of health and started at Oundle Primary School on Tuesday. She has recovered enough to undertake a 10-mile walk through Hyde Park in London in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital on Sunday, September 25, with her parents Vanessa and Richard, of New Road, Oundle.

Vanessa said: “Lana is doing really well, she has check-ups every six months at Addenbrookes Hospital where they do blood tests to make sure she is doing as well on the inside as she looks on the outside, but thankfully she is very well now.

“It’s a huge relief that she has come through the treatment so well.”

Vanessa said Lana recently started asking questions about raising money for charity, having seen some family friends hold a cake and plant stall for WaterAid.

She said: “She thought it was a great idea and started coming up with big plans on how she could raise money.

Firstly she wanted to hold a big party in our house, then a big picnic but then after a visit to Great Ormond Street Hospital a few weeks ago she decided she wanted to do a walk with some of the nurses, consultants and other patients who have had a bone marrow transplant there.”

Lana’s grandparents Jenny and Tony Leeson will also be taking part in the walk and the family hope to raise more than £300.

Vanessa said: “Great Ormond Street is an amazing place which has touched the lives of so many children and their families. Without the fantastic work and support of its nurses and doctors, along with Lana’s bone marrow donor, we wouldn’t have our daughter here today.

“As a family we wanted to say thank you to the hospital and help them raise money to help other families like ours.”

To sponsor the family visit www.justgiving.com/VanessaLeeson.