A PRIMARY school in Friezland is rallying together in support of one of its students who is facing a battle for her life.
Jessica Bowers, 10, was diagnosed with Lymphoblastic Leukaemia last November and has spent four months in a specialist unit at the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.
Now, Friezland Primary School, which she attends with younger brother Archie, 8, is staging a fundraiser on Wednesday, February 26 which they have dubbed ‘Wig Wednesday’.
Dad Russell said: “Before she started losing her hair, Jessica said she didn’t want a wig and wanted to be bald. So, we asked her hairdresser to shave her head before her hair fell out.
“She now wears lots of differently coloured turbans and headgear. The school then approached us with the idea to do this Wig Wednesday fundraiser to show their support for Jessica.
“The idea is everyone – students and staff – pitches in a small donation to wear any kind of crazy headwear they choose, whether that’s wigs, hats… anything really!
“There’s a prize per class for the wackiest headgear, and that will be judged by Jessica. It’s a lovely thought and we’d love to get more people involved on the day.”
Lymphoblastic Leukaemia affects the white blood cells and is a rare cancer with around 790 cases reported each year. It is the most common type of Leukaemia to affect children.
Since her diagnosis, Jessica has been unable to return home due to the severity of her condition, except on a couple of occasions where she’s had a reprieve.
Russell continued: “She’s had a couple of days here and there when she’s been able to come out of hospital, but it was only very briefly. She has been an inpatient for several months now.
“Because the cancer affects the white blood cells, she very prone to infection. It’s heart-breaking for us as parents and what makes it even harder is trying to maintain a level of normality for her brother.
“The school have been simply fantastic in that respect, and their support of our entire family. Jessica is such an amazing little girl and we’re keeping everything crossed that she makes a full recovery.”
All funds raised from the Wig Wednesday event will be donated to Jessica’s unit on Ward 84 at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.