A little girl who has undergone a harrowing cancer ordeal has had a new spring put in her step - thanks to an ‘inspirational’ dance teacher.
Little Holly Hinvest, seven, was first diagnosed with leukaemia in November last year and has since gone through gruelling courses of chemotherapy.
And when keen dancer Holly, from Haywards Heath, lost most of her hair because of the treatment, she did not want to re-join her beloved ballet class because she feared the reaction of other pupils.
But dance teacher Laura Veazey stepped in and saved the day by offering private one-to-one tuition. “It was fantastic,” said Holly’s mum Louise. “Laura said ‘If Holly doesn’t feel up to it, don’t worry’.” But Holly, who has been having lessons at the Gielgud Academy in Haywards Heath since she was four years old, has managed to go every single week during term time, even though she is still undergoing chemo treatment.
And Holly herself - a pupil at Great Walstead School in Lindfield - is proving an inspiration to others. She has taken part in various fundraisers and her sponsorship page has raised over £19,500 for cancer related charities (http://www.justgiving.com/teams/allchange)
Mum Louise said: “Although Holly was diagnosed just before her seventh birthday, she amazes me in the way she wants to help other children going through similar treatment.”
Louise, a lawyer, recalled the horrific time when Holly first became ill. “It was towards the end of summer and she just became very tired, kept getting colds, headaches, night sweats and her skin was very pale. Her school nurse suggested that we should get a blood test done at A&E.”
Little Holly has since had treatment at the Royal Marsden Hospital and the Royal Alexander Children’s Hospital - ‘amazing places’ say Louise and Holly’s dad Craig.
Now, although still undergoing ‘maintenance’ chemotherapy for the next 18 months, Holly has managed to get back to school this term. Louise said:“I have told her not to try to do too muchbut she said ‘Mum, I want to do it all. I want to challenge myself’.”