Driffield News

Family’s fundraising efforts to allow Rowan to realise his Disneyland dream

The family of terminally-ill four-year-old Rowan Macrae is fundraising to fulfil his last wish of visiting Disneyland with his family.


Rowan, whose mum Kathyrn (formerly known as Kylie Mallory) grew up in Driffield, has the genetic condition Neurofibromatosis type 1.


This causes tumours to grow along his nerves and in Rowan’s case they are growing in his leg and brain stem.


Sadly for Rowan, doctors have said the tumour in his brain stem is inoperable and his family have been told he may not reach his 10th birthday.

We desperately want to take him to Disneyland Paris to take him away from hospitals, doctors and any mention of being ill and give him something happy.

kathryn Macrae


Now his family, who are living in Shefford in Bedfordshire, are raising funds to give Rowan and his seven-year-old brother Finlay a holiday to remember and happy memories for the family to treasure.


Kathryn, who attended Driffield School & Sixth Form and whose grandma and brothers still live in the town, said: “Rowan was diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) at the age of one.


“He also has scoliosis, which is where the spine twists and curves.


“NF1 is a genetic condition and only one parent has to carry the gene to pass it on and there is a 50 per cent chance if a parent has it, they will pass it on to a child and both my children have it and so do I.


“Finlay and I have dark skin patches because it also affects the skin and I have a growth on my optic nerve.


“Because Rowan has one of the plexiform neurofibromas growing in his brain stem, they can’t remove it and the doctor has told us it is life-limiting and Rowan will be very lucky to see 10 years old.


“This is so difficult for any parent to hear about their child and is something we have struggled to come to terms with, but it has made us even more determined to give Rowan the best possible life we can before then.”


Rowan’s family are now raising funds to take him and his brother to Disneyland this August to give them a break from hospitals and doctors and let the boys spend some precious time together.


Kathryn added: “In August 2020, Rowan had a portion of a tumour removed and we spent a significant amount of time in hospital.


“While we were there, we watched all of the of Disney films and his particular favourite is Cars.


“We desperately want to take him to Disneyland Paris to take him away from hospitals, doctors and any mention of being ill and give him something happy.


“Rowan is the sweetest, kindest child and a real cheeky chappy and his brother Finlay also deserves to have some happy memories with his brother.”


The family set a target of raising £3,000 and to date they have already received £1,620.


“The support we have received has been unbelievable,” said Kathryn.


“We are so grateful to everyone who has supported us and some of the donations are from people we don’t even know and that generosity from strangers is overwhelming.”


Finlay, who has also been crowned Prince of his hometown Shefford, added his thanks.


He said: “I would like to thank everyone who has helped us so far so my brother and I can have a happy holiday together.”


If you can support Kathryn with her fundraising, please visit her crowdfunding page at justgiving.com/crowdfunding/kathryn-macrae.

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