A plea to help save the life of a former Coventry City player's baby has raised more than £1m in just 17 hours.
Yesterday Ashley Cain, and his family in Nuneaton, launched an appeal to help save the life of his baby girl Azaylia who has a "rare and aggressive" form of cancer known as acute myeloid leukaemia.
The 30-year-old told fans that Azaylia's leukaemia has returned – just as they were about to take her home from hospital.
He said: "After long discussions and a global outreach for treatment, our consultants along with consultants from around the world have come to the conclusion that the ONLY option to save Azaylia’s life is to fly to Singapore for CAR-T therapy plus a haplo transplant, for a minimum period of 1 year.
"Because of the aggressiveness of Azaylia’s disease, we don’t have time on our side and we may have to fly out within a matter of weeks.
"This treatment and associated expenses will be in excess of 1 million pounds with an initial deposit of £500,000 just to be accepted into the hospital and onto the program."
The family set-up a GoFundMe page to try and raise enough money for the life-saving treatment in Singapore.
Within 17 hours, the page had received nearly £1.5m in donations.
Among those who had donated to Cain's fund were Love Island stars Molly-Mae Hague and Maura Higgins, as well as footballers Robert Snodgrass, Barry Bannan and Harrison Reed.
After reaching their target, parents Ashley and Safiyya wrote: "We’re absolutely delighted to have raised over one million pounds in less than 24 hours! We are so overwhelmed by the support we have received and cannot begin to express our deep gratitude and thanks to you all. There’s a old proverb that says ‘it takes a village to raise a child’ and YOU are our village. Without your kind and generous donations Azaylia would not be able to get the treatment she so desperately needs."Ashley and his family have now pledged to continue supporting other children and their families who are in the same situation.
The family says they will donate any extra funds to families in need and Ashley will be embarking on a charity bike ride, cycling 150 miles from Birmingham Children’s hospital to London, to raise more money for charity.