Losing a child is every parent’s worst nightmare so what they go through when their son or daughter is diagnosed with a potentially fatal disease is impossible to imagine.

That is why the support provided by local charity Leucan is so vital.

It is made up of parents whose children are either having treatment for or who have experienced a battle against leukaemia.

One of its main strengths is the hope it can offer parents of newly diagnosed youngsters, who are able to see how others have come through the traumatic experience.

Obviously, not every story will always end happily but anything that can help families keep the strength to stay positive is to be welcomed.

Friends Alex Warne and Polly Lewis were diagnosed within four days of each other in 2003 but now the teenagers are fit and well and about to embark on careers.

They and their parents understand the ordeal of dealing with treatment for leukaemia and are doing what they can to help others. Hopefully their story will act as an inspiration to many.