Inspirational Perth teenager Lily Douglas has joined celebrity chef Jean-Christophe Novelli for a Christmas cook-along in aid of Cancer Research.
Lily, 13, took part in virtual cookery class with the Michelin-starred chef to launch this year’s Cancer Research UK for Children & Young People Star Awards.
The charity is a cause close to both of their hearts after the teenager was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma aged nine and Novelli’s youngest son Valentino has also been treated for cancer.
The teenager joined a small group of young cooks affected by the disease for whom , as the French restauranteur gave them an online masterclass in making Joyeux Noël Christmas pancakes with spiced cranberry sauce.
Recently Lily has been travelling from Perth to the Royal Marsden Hospital in London a clinical trial programme funded by Cancer Research UK for children and young people with cancer that is relapsed or not responding to other treatment.
Lily said: “It was difficult at first when I got ill again but I’ll keep fighting.
“I really enjoyed meeting Jean-Christophe and I was happy I was able to flip the pancake and catch it.
“It made me smile when he said he liked my Scottish accent too. I’m looking forward to Christmas, to sending time feeling cosy in my jammies and watching nice films with my family.”
Lily’s mum, Jane, said despite everything the youngster still approaches everyday with a smile on her face.
The celebrity cook-along comes just over a month after Lily celebrated her 13th birthday.
“Lily has spent so much of her childhood living with cancer.
“We are on a heartbreaking journey but all the amazing people who support us make things so much easier.
“We loved cooking with Jean-Christophe. Lily got a perfect flip on her pancake but I dropped mine.
“Lily is incredible. She faces every day with a smile on her face.”
After his youngest son Valentino was diagnosed with cancer in 2016, Novelli knows all too well the devastating impact the disease can have on children like Lily.
He said: “I was in bits when Valentino was diagnosed and had to watch as he endured two years of intense treatment.
“Knowing what children with cancer have to face, giving a little bit of excitement through what I love and to see Lily and the kids have fun and try something like the cook-along was beautiful.
“It was my absolute pleasure to meet Lily. She is an incredible, strong girl who has the most amazing eyes.
“She was so calm and focused during the cook-along, listening and paying attention throughout.
“It was lovely watching her cook along with her mum. They made a fantastic team. Hearing how much Lily has been through and continue to go through, she is so brave and inspiring.”
The Star Awards are run in partnership with TK Maxx, the biggest corporate supporter of Cancer Research UK’s work into children’s and young people’s cancers.
To nominate a Star visit cruk.org/starawards.