Dancers raise funds for vital treatment

PROUD: Nicola Kennedy’s young dancers raised  £1,000 on St Patrick's Day PROUD: Nicola Kennedy’s young dancers raised £1,000 on St Patrick's Day
By Brónach Ní Thuama

BIG-HEARTED punters dug deep on St Patrick’s day to help raise an astounding £1,000 to go towards the treatment for Lagmore woman Kellie McConville.

Kellie was diagnosed with an aggressive form of bowel cancer in July last year, just months after her mother died of lung cancer.

The 42-year-old mum-of-one has been undergoing innovative alternative treatments at the Marinus Am Stein clinic in Germany. She now needs thousands of pounds to continue the vital immunotherapy, which could save her life.

Devastatingly, the tumour has since spread to Kellie’s liver and lung, but she is determined to remain resolute in her battle to survive.

On St Patrick’s Day Irish dancers, aged 5-14, from the Nicola Kennedy School of Dancing entertained the crowds in the Central Catholic Club, dancing from 4pm-5.30pm and asking customers to make a donation towards Kellie’s treatment costs.

Proud dance teacher Nicola said she was delighted with the response from customers.

“The children were so good on the day I was really proud of them. The customers really enjoyed their dances and the staff and management of the Three C’s were so generous looking after them with refreshments.

“I feel very proud that we have done something to raise money and awareness for Kellie and the treatment she requires and I only hope that people continue to raise funds for her so she can carry on with her treatment in Germany.”

Although Kellie was initially reluctant to appeal to the public for support, she became determined to survive for the sake of her young daughter, Mia. Her family have since set up a Go Fund Me page to raise crucial treatment funds.

Speaking to the Andersonstown News in February Kellie said: “I was against the Go Fund Me page at the start but my family told me that they needed to save my life, so I told them to go for it,” she said. “I want to have immunotherapy, which has good success rates in cancer.

“All you have to do is go online to see the amount of people that are beating cancer with alternative methods. It really is encouraging for me and I have a sheer will to live. How could I leave my daughter? I can’t leave her. She’s only six.”

“The people of Belfast and beyond are absolutely amazing. I can’t believe the amount of people who have messaged me, called to my house, asked what they can do to help – they’re unbelievable. I feel very humbled because I’ve never asked anyone for anything in my life.”

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