A BRAVE five-year-old boy from Feltham is the subject of a community fund raising campaign to gather enough money to support life saving treatment.
Aarin Bhatt, of Tawny Close, has been battling Neuroblastoma, a form of childhood cancer, for more than 18 months.
He was diagnosed on a family holiday in India in late 2009 after he refused to eat. A scan showed a 12cm tumour in his abdomen, and cancer had spread to his bones and bone marrow.
Aarin has undergone nearly 15 rounds of gruelling chemotherapy, which has eradicated the cancer from his bones and bone marrow. Surgery to remove the tumour cannot be carried out in the UK and he will have to travel to Germany to receive immunotherapy.
The NHS are unable to help with the cost of the treatment, but luckily the Neuroblastoma Alliance charity has agreed to meet the £70,000 bill. But the family wants to raise enough money to meet any additional treatment costs, travel expenses and accommodation.
Aarin and his parents Nehal, 34, and Rachna, 34, will need to travel to Greifswald, and stay for 15 days of every month for six months. They need to raise between £10,000 and £15,000.
Mr Bhatt said he has been "overwhelmed" with the support from the local community. St Richard's Church held an event that raised around £1,000, they have been praying for the family in every service and his previous nursery school, St Richard's Playgroup, held a sponsored event this week.
Mr Bhatt said: "Aarin has had about 15 rounds of chemo, children can die from the treatment itself but he has survived all of that. He still laughs and smiles, it's incredible.
"The future is very uncertain, it has been exhausting for us ever since we found out. We are overwhelmed by the response from the community. It is wonderful."
Children at the nursery held a sponsored 'Grizzly' and music and rhyme time on Tuesday (March 15) from 11am. The event was inspired by Charles Earl, a member of the St Richard's Church congregation, who is talking part in a 20 mile race called the 'Grizzly' in Devon, also to raise money for Aarin.
Nursery manager Joy Snoddy, said: "We need to raise as much money as possible to enable the family to travel to and fro so that Aarin can have this life-saving treatment. The treatment is very painful but it will help Aarin’s body to stop the cancer from returning."
Aarin came to the nursery school on the day to watch the youngsters walk, run, jog, jump, and sing, to gather funds for his treatment. The total raised is yet to be announced.
Mrs Snoddy said: "He has been so brave, amazing really. At this playgroup we take on the families too, so we get to know all the children's parents. Aarin hasn't been able to attend for a while because he has been too ill, but we really wanted to do something to help."
Aarin's family have set up an online donations page. To find out more visit www.bmycharity.com/aarinbhattappeal