A MAJOR campaign to raise money to fund a potentially 'life-saving' vaccine for a three-year-old boy has reached its target goal.

The family and friends of Freddie Thompson of Ampleforth in North Yorkshire, set up the 'Freddie's Fight' campaign and managed to fundraise £250,000 in just over six months.

Freddie was diagnosed with an aggressive form of stage four neuroblastoma in September.

He has since undergone several chemotherapy sessions, a ten-hour operation to remove his tumour, radiotherapy and has now resuming treatment for immunotherapy. 

Immunotherapy, which has only recently become available on the NHS, boosts the body's natural defences to fight cancer cells.

However, following an early reaction to the immunotherapy, Freddie is now recieving a smaller dose of the treatement.

At the beginning of the year, the campaign was set up in an attempt to fly Freddie to the Sloan Kettering Memorial Hospital in New York for a 'bivalent vaccination'.

The Northern Echo: Freddie is resuming immunotherapy treatment Freddie is resuming immunotherapy treatment

The vaccination, which is not available in Britain, is hoped can reduce Freddie's chance of a relapse from 50 percent to 10 percent.

After achieving their goal, his parents Philip and Emily Thompson said: “We will forever be grateful to all the wonderful people who have donated and given up their time to help us raise this amount for Freddie’s treatment.

"Never in a million years did we think we would reach this amount so quickly. We live in a truly amazing community where people are willing to do so much to help our little boy and we are completely overwhelmed by the love everyone has for Freddie.”

The Northern Echo: Freddie was diagnosed in SeptemberFreddie was diagnosed in September

Family member and campaigner, Helen Ward, said the efforts from members of the public 'showed their support' for the three-year-old.

She said: "We've got the £250,000 raised which he needs to get the vaccine in America.

"He needs to have his immunotherapy, but because of an earlier reaction, it has put it back a little bit. It's looking like treatment will be in December - he's on a lesser dose."

Ms Ward said the money raised for Freddie would be held in a protected account for the next five years, and anything that the family did not use would be donated to the charity group, Solving Kids' Cancer. 

Ms Ward added: "There's other little kids who aren't as fortunate."