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Anna’s Story

Anna's story

Anna Hughes was diagnosed with a brain tumour in February 2005. Following an 8-hour operation to remove the tumour she underwent an intensive chemotherapy programme at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. For 15 months she spent every other week in hospital but sadly, like so many children diagnosed with brain tumours, Anna lost her battle and passed away aged 3 years 8 months. She was an inspiration to everyone she met.

Anna never once complained that she had lost her hair or had to be fed through a tube in her nose for 15 months. She was courageous! Even though she was frightened during the many times when she was in hospital, she never once refused to do what was asked of her. Despite the constant drain on her energy that comes with chemotherapy, Anna was full of life, full of character and full of mischief. It is a tragedy that someone so young should die and my husband Rob, daughter Sara and I miss her so much.

Throughout Anna’s treatment Rob and I were privileged to meet a lot of brave children like Anna – too many in fact. A child with a brain tumour has the worst cancer they can get, and it has a devastating impact on their lives, along with their whole family. Brain tumours are the UK’s biggest cancer killer of children and young people. What’s more, those who survive can develop significant problems with learning ability, physical ability and behaviour.

Before we knew Anna was going to die, Rob and I vowed that we would try our best in the future to help children with brain tumours, to try to improve their chances of survival and support their rehabilitation.

Anna’s death has given us extra purpose to achieve this goal, albeit an enormous challenge, but if we all had the attitude of not doing things because it was too difficult, we would not have seen the significant advancement in medicine over the last 25 years. We do not underestimate the challenges that lie ahead, but we are inspired by Anna and children like her who battle such terrible illnesses each and every day. With your help we want to give future children a better life and improved chances of survival.
Anna certainly changed our lives and now her legacy is to change the lives of so many others.

- Carole Hughes
Anna’s Mummy
Co-founder of Anna’s Hope.

Carole Hughes talks about Anna

Here in this video Carole talks about Anna and her story. She talks about how the charity, inspired by Anna, is making a difference to the lives of children with brain tumours.

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About our logo – Fairy Anna

Anna loved everything about fairies. She had her fairy dress and wings on at every opportunity! As such, a fairy was perfect to represent the charity. The Anna’s Hope Charity logo was taken from an image doodled by Anna’s sister, Sara, who explains, “The logo is shaped upon our memory of Anna at her happiest, smiling and dancing around with her fairy wand and making magic, Fairy Anna.”

The reasoning behind the charity colours are also inspired by Anna, whom despite her Mummy’s attempt to dress her from head to toe in pink, she always preferred blue!

Finally, the blue flowers found on Fairy Anna’s dress are forget-me-nots, to symbolise that Anna will never be forgotten for the magic she brought to the lives of all those who knew her.

The Charity hopes to continue to bring a little hope and magic to other children and young people whose lives are affected by brain tumours.