Harold Hill resident founded charity to support young people diagnosed with brain cancer
PUBLISHED: 12:00 17 January 2019 | UPDATED: 12:15 17 January 2019
A Harold Hill woman has started a charity that aims to tackle the biggest cancer killer of children and adults under the age of 40.
Samantha Schaad, 53, of Lancing Road, began fundraising for brain cancer victims after a relative was diagnosed with the disease at the age 25.
Five years later Samantha decided to set up her own charity and named it Tommy Meagers’ Warriors (TMW) after her relative.
She told the Recorder: “My cousin’s son was diagnosed with a grade three brain tumour. He was given a very poor prognosis and very little support.
“The Brain Tumour Charity is great because they use a lot of the money they’re given to do more research into brain cancer. However, [Tommy] wanted to do things like freeze his sperm, which would cost him a lot of money.
“I thought if I started a charity, we might be able to help people with these costs.”
In August 2017 TMW became an approved charity. The organisation offers emotional support, practical help and social activities to anyone with a brain tumour and to their family, friends and carers.
It aims to raise awareness and grant wishes for warriors with brain tumours.
Samantha believes that people aren’t as aware of the number of people of being diagnosed with brain tumours. “If you look at the statistics, it’s the biggest cancer killer of children and adults under the age of 40, according to the Brain Tumour Charity,” she said.
“Recently my daughter told me that her friend who is 22 had an epileptic fit and after tests, doctors discovered that she had a grade four cancer.
“It’s very common amongst young people.”
Samantha said that Tommy has been doing well since his diagnosis. He recently celebrated his 30th birthday and has had two children despite his illness.
People can get involved with TMW by either donating funds or taking part in their events, such as their big charity ball at Stockbrock Manner in Billericay in February.