Chipping Hill Primary School in Witham will be turning yellow for the day this Friday (March 2) and it’s all in a very good cause. Friday is Big Yellow Friday, the national awareness and fundraising day of Children’s Liver Disease Foundation (CLDF). Hundreds of people around the country will be taking part in yellow themed activities in a bid to raise funds to fight childhood liver disease, for which there is still no cure.
One pupil at Chipping Hill, however, will be going above and beyond the call of duty. Eight year old Grace Campbell-Garrett is being sponsored to have her hip length hair cut at school in front of all her friends!
Grace knows more than most about the impact of childhood liver disease, as her six year old sister, Eve, was born with the rare liver disease, biliary atresia.
“Although Eve had early corrective surgery, her liver is becoming quite unhappy and the subsequent conditions she has developed alongside the biliary atresia are starting to become too much for her body to cope with, so she has now been put on the waiting list for a liver transplant,” explains the girls’ mum Sarah. “This has taken a huge toll on the whole family as we wait for the phone call which will give Eve her gift of life.
“Throughout all of this, Grace has been an amazing big sister to Eve. She has coped fantastically and the love she shows for Eve blows us away. Her hair is now so long that getting it cut is a huge moment for her, but it was completely Grace’s idea. She wants to donate her hair to the Little Princess Trust and for the sponsorship money to ‘help children with poorly livers’. She set herself an original target of £150 and has now reached almost ten times that so we are incredibly proud of her.
“When Grace told her head teacher about her idea, he and her Dad were so impressed that they made a deal with her to shave their heads at the same time! The school are amazing. We honestly couldn’t ask for a more supportive team around Grace and Eve. The whole school is getting behind Big Yellow Friday and Grace is so excited and overwhelmed with the amount of support she has received. We have even had donations from complete strangers who have heard about the girls’ story.”
Alison Taylor, Chief Executive of CLDF, said: “Our services provide a lifeline to the thousands of families whose lives have been shattered by childhood liver disease and we rely on voluntary donations for the vast majority of our income. So Big Yellow Friday is a huge day for us and we are just amazed by the was Grace has got her whole school behind it. This is a wonderful thing to do for her sister and the many other children affected by liver disease and we are truly grateful for her efforts.”
Anyone who would like to sponsor Grace’s big haircut can go to her JustGiving page.
Photo caption: Grace Campbell-Garrett (left) who will be getting her hair cut this Friday to raise funds for Children’s Liver Disease Foundation is pictured with her sister Eve, who is awaiting a liver transplant