£275,000 raised for children who lost both parents to cancer

Adam Boult
The Bennet family

Three siblings who lost both parents to cancer within the space of a week will not have to give up their family home, as they had feared, after members of the public donated in excess of £275,000 via an online crowdfunding  campaign.

The JustGiving appeal set up for the children closed this week with a total of £276,820 submitted in donations, allowing Luke, Hannah and Oliver Bennett, aged 21, 18 and 13 respectively, to pay the mortgage on their home in Wirral, and for the older siblings to continue with their university education.

Their father Mike was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2013, and mother Julie was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2016, which spread to her other organs.

Mr Bennet died on February 6 at the age of 57. Mrs Bennet followed on February 11, aged 50. Both died at the same Merseyside hospice.

Julie and Mike Bennet holding hands on their deathbeds. 

A family friend set up an online appeal for the greiving children, and within hours donations totaling tens of thousands of pounds had flooded in.

In a statement released in the days after their parents' death, Luke Bennet said: “My brother, sister and I are overwhelmed by the enormous support and generosity we have received from so many friends and well-wishers.

“Mum has appreciated all the help from close friends in supporting the family over the last three years through difficult times and it would be a huge relief to her to know this support will continue.”

In a new interview with the Times, Luke said they were considering what to do with the donations they've received - and are considering passing a proportion on to other good causes.

"We now have enough financial security," he said. "We said it would be nice — we don't know exactly what the bills are going to be — but it would be nice if we could put a portion of it towards other charitable things. Hopefully give back some of the generosity we have received.

"We have said that some of the things that are being planned in our name, maybe give the money towards cancer research."

Hannah added: "There's other people that need it more than us. There was something I read on the JustGiving page about somebody needing treatment and that was about them keeping their life and not about being able to stay in the same house."

 

 

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