Friends and family of a young boy battling a rare form of cancer have show him their support – by having their heads shaved and legs waxed.
Relatives of three-year-old Ryan Walker, of Penwortham, near Preston, might be feeling a chill on the cold mornings now, but it was all for a good cause.
The group of 14 raised funds for two charities helping the youngster, who was diagnosed with a Wilms’ tumour, a type of kidney cancer, a few months ago.
The event, organised by Ryan’s mum and dad, Stephen and Rachel, was held at St Gerard’s Parochial Centre in Lostock Hall.
The couple, who also have a son Ethan, six, are thrilled with the response, having raised more than £1,000 from the event.
The money raised will go to Manchester Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia Group (CCLG).
Mum Rachel said: “We are blown away by it, it was amazing. We ended up with 12 for the head shave and four for the leg wax – two doubled up.
“The raffle did really well, it made a lot more than we thought it would, it made just short of £600.
“It was packed out. Bamber Bridge fire station came too. Ethan wants to be a firefighter when he is older, so it was for him and the other children too.
“For our first event we are made up and we still have sponsorship money to come in.”
Next Wednesday the family will hold a raffle at the youth centre in Priory Lane, Penwortham, as part of the Penwortham Christmas Markets.
The idea for the head shave was to show support for Ryan whose own hair has started to fall out as a result of his treatment.
The leg wax was for those gents in the group who didn’t have much hair on top.
After a rollercoaster few months, it is hoped that when Ryan finishes his chemotherapy next May, things will start to look up.
Meanwhile Ryan has had another surprise after local builder Paul Wignall bought him and Ethan a Christmas present.
Paul contacted the Evening Post after seeing the first story we published about the Walkers offering to buy the children each a gift.
He visited them recently – with the help of Spider-Man – to hand over a tablet each and goody bags.
Paul, 46, from the Ribble Valley, who runs Preston-based PW Building Services, said he felt compelled to help.
Rachel said: “I think going through this and the raffle prizes coming in and Paul doing this makes your realise it’s not a dog eat dog world –there are people out there with hearts.”
The family intend to continue their fundraising efforts. To show your support visit: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/RyansChildhoodCancerQuest
To follow Ryan’s journey search Ryan’s Childhood Cancer Quest on Facebook.