Belfast Telegraph

Pray for Charlie as he prepares for the fight of his life

By Claire Williamson

He's the little boy who was hoping for a miracle.

Now Charlie Craig has started the fight of his life as a part- donor has been found for the three-year-old from Lisburn.

Charlie has been battling myeloid leukaemia since January 2013 and requires immediate intensive chemotherapy and a life-saving bone marrow transplant.

Urgent donation drives were held in Belfast and in Cookstown to find a life-saving match.

A part-donor was found for Charlie on the international database of over 20m people.

On May 5, Charlie was admitted to hospital in Bristol for what his family had already been told would be the "fight of his life."

Initially he has to have conditioning treatment which wipes out his immune system using a cocktail of very strong chemotherapy drugs.

Charlie is expected to have his actual transplant later this week.

His family posted on Charlie's Facebook Group Page asking for prayers to get them through this "acutely painful and anxious time".

"We need specific prayer for the courage, strength of body and mental stamina to face each stage of Charlie's treatment with the accompanying challenges, which we have been told can be medically managed but are a constant stress.

"We ask you to pray that our very brave little Charlie will get through all of this with the minimum of pain and distress, resulting ultimately in the complete cure of his condition and no issues short or long-term."

To raise money for bone marrow charities, Charlie's dad and a group of cyclists are taking part in a Cycling for Charlie event from Belmullet in Co Mayo to Howth in Co Dublin. It starts on August 19 and finishes on August 22 after a gruelling 280 miles.

An online auction has also been organised. Prizes on offer include two pairs of One Direction tickets for Saturday May 24 and Sunday May 25 at Croke Park. As of yesterday, the bid stood at £50 for one pair.

The deadline for bids is Sunday. To place your bid visit www.cyclingforcharlie. com/auction/

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