A Father’s Day to remember for Wolverhampton dad Simon
June 17, 2021
- Simon and Anjna’s four year old daughter, Mia is cancer-free after enduring three years of treatment for rare blood cancer
- Ronald McDonald House Birmingham supported the family during Mia’s lengthy hospital stay
- To fundraise for the Charity that supported the family, Anjna will be participating in a sky dive this Father’s Day
Doting dad Simon Caulton from Wolverhampton, will be celebrating a very special Father’s Day next weekend. His four year old daughter, Mia recently marked one year cancer-free after three years of gruelling treatment. Simon and Mia will be cheering on Mia’s mum, Anjna as she takes to the skies for a Sky Dive on Father’s Day next Sunday to raise money for the charity that supported the family during Mia’s ordeal, Ronald McDonald House Charities UK.
Mia Caulton was diagnosed with Infantile Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia in July 2017 when she was just seven months old and referred to Birmingham Children’s Hospital to begin four rounds of chemotherapy and treatment. This type of cancer has just a 50% survival rate before the child reaches the age of five. Simon, a manufacturing operations consultant used to challenging situations in business, found his and partner Anjna’s lives turned upside-down as they grappled with the news.
About Mia’s diagnosis, Simon commented:
“I have always been a strong, outgoing, and confident person. I wouldn’t give a second thought to jumping on a plane to travel 6,000 miles and work in countries I’ve never been to before. During Mia’s treatment, I was confined to a hospital and just popping out to the local shop would fill me with anxiety. There were so many difficult nights sitting next Mia’s bed on the ward, seeing how poorly she was and hearing the other sick children. I had to tell myself to be strong, that my little girl needed me more now than ever.”
Mia spent her first birthday, Christmas and New Year receiving hospital treatment, even taking her very first steps on the ward. A saving grace at this critical time was the Ronald McDonald House situated at Birmingham Children’s Hospital which offers free accommodation to families with children in the hospital. Ronald McDonald House Birmingham housed Simon and Anjna for 225 nights, keeping them as close as possible to Mia’s hospital bedside.
“Ronald McDonald House Birmingham truly was our lifeline and very own ‘home away from home’. The days and nights we walked from the House to the Hospital and back again were loaded with anxiety and pain. The fear of what we would we endure as a family in that one day. The House gave us such respite and became our own sanctuary.”
Mia was discharged from hospital treatment in March 2018, and for the next 18 months Anjna and Simon administered oral chemotherapy at home, hoping and praying Mia would continue to recover. In October 2019, oral treatment started to come to an end and Mia was finally declared cancer-free in March 2021. As a way of giving back the family have undertaken different fundraising events for Ronald McDonald House Charities UK over the past year, with Mia even completing a 25 lap training circuit of the family’s back garden last summer, raising over £1,500.
Anjna is now preparing to take on the sky dive on Father’s Day, and has already hit her target of £5,000 which will go towards sponsoring one of the rooms they stayed in during their eight and a half months in hospital.
“The fact that I can celebrate Father’s Day with my little girl fit and well without any threat of illness or pain, means more to me than I can describe. I am so thankful to spend the day with Mia, after everything she has been through. I am really proud of Anjna for taking on the Skydive and Mia and I can’t wait to cheer her on as she makes the leap for a great cause!”
Ronald McDonald House Charities UK operates 12 Ronald McDonald Houses across the UK situated in or near hospital grounds, enabling seriously ill children to have their families close by when they are undergoing treatment. In 2019, the Charity supported almost 6,000 families.