A FUNDRAISER has been launched by a West Kilbride teacher to get her son to New York for potentially life-saving treatment.

Victoria MacDonald's son Calum Rae, aged just four, has had his life turned upside down by a tumour diagnosis.

Now Victoria - who teaches at the village's primary school and is originally from Dalry - and her partner Andrew Rae are looking to raise £250,000 to get their "little Rae of sunshine" a potentially life-saving vaccination which is currently undergoing trials.

A JustGiving page has been set up (and can be found at tinyurl.com/CalumRae) in a bid to get him to the USA.

Calum is a bright-eyed boy who loves to play and make other people laugh with silly voices, funny faces and mischievous games.

He is incredibly loving and affectionate. Calum loves cuddles and saying “I love you,” to all his family.

Calum has recently been promoted to 'big brother to Emily' who is now aged five months - and who he absolutely adores.

But his life changed at the start of this year when he caught chickenpox - and didn't seem to get better after the rash cleared up.

His parents, on Calum's JustGiving page, explained: "He began to complain of a sore body and at times would refuse to walk.

"We went to our local GP who thought he had post-herpetic Neuralgia , a side effect most common with shingles.

"As time passed, Calum didn’t get any better and new symptoms arose. We became increasingly worried and after our third visit to the GP we were referred to our local hospital.

"The doctors suspected a spinal infection and conducted an MRI scan to locate the infection. Unfortunately, we received news that tore our hearts apart."

Calum’s MRI scan showed that he has a tumour above his adrenal gland, which had spread throughout his full body, including to his bone marrow and bones. involvement.

He was then immediately transferred to Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Children where they conducted further tests to diagnose Calum’s cancer.

He and his parents, who live with baby Emily in Troon, then received a heart-breaking diagnosis - he had stage M high-risk neuroblastoma. This is a rare and aggressive cancer with a high risk of return and consequently a poor survival rate.

His parents continued: "Calum’s treatment is now under way and he is currently undergoing gruelling induction chemotherapy.

"He has taken everything so far in his stride without any complaints, and with a smile on his face. His chemo has already relieved his pain and he is back to being the boy we know - the fun, bouncing boy who is full of love and laughter.

"Calum still has surgery, high dose chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy to endure to get better. Unfortunately, even after this intensive treatment, it is likely the cancer will return.

"If it was to return, Calum’s chance of survival would severely decrease."

That is what led Victoria and Andrew to their New York plans, and potentially life-saving trips out to the States.

They continued: "A new vaccination is in trial at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre in New York.

"This centre specialises in neuroblastoma and is world-leading in developing immunotherapies against neuroblastoma.

"The vaccine trains the immune system to identify and destroy neuroblastoma cells. It can reduce the chance of relapse and increase the chance of survival.

"The vaccine isn’t available here in the UK, so we hope to fundraise to be able to take Calum to New York for this treatment.

"It would involve Calum making the journey to New York multiple times throughout the year."

So now, fund-raising plans are well under way, beginning with their JustGiving page. These will continue with a number of fundraising events due to be planned in the coming months.

"We hope to raise this money to give Calum the chance he deserves to survive this dreadful cancer," his parents added.

Victoria and Andrew have so far raised just over £15,000 towards their target od £250,000.

To donate, and find out more, visit tinyurl.com/CalumRae.