A mother whose son died from a rare form of bone cancer has helped give hundreds of sick children their wishes after setting up a charity in his name.
Jordan Giddins, 18, from Flintshire, died from Ewing’s Sarcoma - a childhood bone cancer in 2017.
His mum Mandy Giddins told ITV News said she could do two things after her son died of cancer: “I had two options. Either I gave up or I did something in his memory and that’s what I did”.
Mandy, a nurse at Wrexham Maelor Hospital said her son was always smiling and looking out for others.
She decided to do the same and a few months after he died, she set up a charity called Giddo’s Gift. It provides gifts and wishes for teenagers and young adults diagnosed with cancer.
“He was always kind, caring. He loved giving gifts, he always wanted to help others. We’d be in hospital and he’d always think other people were worse off than him. So because of the way he was we decided we wanted to have a lasting legacy and do something in his memory, that’s basically why we set up Giddo’s Gift”.
More than £350,000 has been raised in six years and countless wishes have been granted.
Mandy, a urology nurse said: “We started off giving gifts and wishes to bring a smile. Jordan was always smiling. He smiled throughout everything so we wanted to bring a smile to the young people as they went through their cancer battle, and it is a battle.”
The charity, which her daughter Beth is also involved with, wanted to give people something to look forward to.
“We’ve done anything from feeding the penguins for one terminally young girl with a brain tumour. We’ve bought Jimmy Choos for someone who couldn’t walk but who wanted to walk and wanted to get into these Jimmy Choos so we do all sorts.”
Goody boxes are also provided to hospitals across the North West of England and North Wales, including the children’s ward at the Wrexham Maelor.
They are filled with things to eat and drink and Ward Manager Becky Morris said they are appreciated.
“When our oncology patients come in it might be late at night, it might be that they’ve got an hour window to get here from when they become unwell at home to us getting treatment started. They can literally run out with very little and what Giddo’s Gift does is give them those things that we can’t provide as the NHS.
"They’ve got access to snacks, drinks and coffees and teas for the parents and those little things are the things that make it bearable being in here so it’s a real God’s send”.
The charity also recently bought a caravan in Porthmadog offering holidays to youngsters with cancer and their families.
The majority of the money raised is through fundraising with some grants through the National Lottery.
Mandy is now nominated for a national award in recognition of her work.
Friend and colleague Kelly Price said it is deserved.
“I don’t know where she gets the strength and the energy from because these are high pressured jobs. She’s working with people with cancer at work as well and everything she’s gone through in her personal life but she’s a true professional, she’s caring to staff and patients and she’s the true essence of nursing”.
For Mandy, the recognition is tinged with sadness.
“It’s an honour for the charity itself to be recognised. I am thrilled and honoured but obviously it’s quite emotional because of why we are doing it. We are doing it in Jordan’s memory but I think I’ve just got to think we’ve helped so many people along the way”.