There has been one story that caught my eye this week and that was the death of beloved football mascot Bradley Lowery. Condolences to his family and friends because no child should die so young. Bradley spent much of his time in the spotlight in the last year because his continuing on with life despite knowing he was going to die, the Sunderland mascot became close to former Sunderland striker Jermaine Defoe, the latter described Bradley has his best friend.

It was announced by his family on Friday that he had passed away, just a day after Defoe became emotional in a press conference for his new team, AFC Bournemouth, when asked about Bradley.

Public grieving

Upon news of his death, his family received a huge number of messages in support and everyone was grieving because this could have well been a child that they knew, or even their own. Only parents who have lost a child can fully understand what the family are going through now. However, much less is being made of the condition he was diagnosed with at 18 months. Neuroblastoma is a cancer that is common amongst children’s cancers and makes up a total of 8% with fewer than 100 diagnoses each year and currently there is no specialist in the UK.

Despite it being the second most common form of children’s cancers, it is still a relatively unknown cancer with very little known about it.

More awareness has been created because of the coverage Bradley received. But why does one child in the UK receive such a collective grievance from society, when children are dying all over the world from war, famine, poverty, a lack of accessible water plus much more? Society doesn’t mourn equally. Approximately, 29,000 children die every day in the world according to UNICEF.

With 1,951 a year in the UK according to RCPCH.

The background of Bradley Lowery also played an important role in the public’s reaction to his death. Different social aspects of ethnicity, class, nationality, perceived religion etc. would’ve played an important role in the image created by society. Would a child of a different ethnic or class background receive as much attention?

Bradley Lowery should be remembered and his publicity should lead to better funding for Neuroblastoma, but equally, society should treat every child’s death with the same grievance and think about how we all could do more to improve Child Mortality rates both nationally and internationally.