Named Funds

Childhood Cancer Ireland is proud to introduce our Named Funds. 

These funds will honour and celebrate a child or young person affected by childhood, adolescent or young adult cancer by continuing to support other families.  

Named funds are ring-fenced charitable funds, held by us on your behalf, providing a way for you to directly support families without the cost and ongoing administration of setting up your own charitable organisation.  

If you would like to donate to one of our named funds or would like to create a fund, please contact us. 

The James Gill Fund

Childhood Cancer Ireland is proud to continue honouring the legacy of James Gill and his dedicated family, who established the James Gill Memorial Trust in 2012 to raise funds in James’ name. James’ parents Geraldine and Declan, with the help of his siblings and a wide circle of supporters, worked tirelessly to create a lasting legacy for James and to fulfil his wish to create comfortable family / patient spaces in hospitals.

After almost 10 years of fundraising, Declan and Geraldine had decided that the time was right to consider winding up the trust, although they did so with heavy hearts. Sadly, Declan passed away in September 2021 from Motor Neuron Disease and Geraldine followed through on their plans to pass the baton to another organisation. We are very grateful that Geraldine chose Childhood Cancer Ireland to continue James’ legacy and transferred the Trust’s remaining funds to enable us to start The James Gill Fund.

Image of a green cancer ribbon with the words James Gill Memorial Trust

About James

James was the eldest child, adored by his parents and grandparents and a protective big brother to his siblings Stephen, Holly and Carl, who idolised him. He loved football and played for Broadford Rovers in Ballinteer in Dublin from the age of 4 to 17, coached by his father Declan. James was an avid Arsenal fan and even received messages of support from Arsene Wenger during his illness.

When he was 13, James had a chance to take part in a Sport Against Racism Ireland (SARI) tournament in Bosnia. His eyes were opened to how other children lived and enjoyed life and sport without access to much in the line of facilities. He couldn’t believe how the kids played football all day on the streets and they were happy with what they had, once they had a football! He came back a different child and was really inspired by SARI and what they do in football. He continued supporting their festival every September in the Phoenix Park and they dedicated the u13 cup to James after he passed away.

In 2010, when he was 17, James started to complain of a stiff back and stomach pains. Initial investigations didn’t reveal anything suspicious, but James started having night sweats and it was eventually discovered that he had a very rare liver cancer called Fibrolamellar Hepatocellular Carcinoma – which hadn’t been diagnosed in Ireland before. James was just three weeks short of his 18th birthday when he was diagnosed and would spend his 18th, 19th and 20th birthdays in hospital.

James took on his diagnosis and treatment with immense courage and maturity. He didn’t want his parents or siblings to worry or suffer so he took responsibility for his own medication, helped by the great relationship he had with doctors and nurses in Tallaght University Hospital. He didn’t want to dwell on his diagnosis and was determined that it wouldn’t get him down.

One doctor told him that he wouldn’t be able to return to school but he proved them wrong and even took a school trip to Paris before sitting his Leaving Cert exams. He did a nursing course, with the nurses on his ward helping him to study while ordering take aways to keep him going! James didn’t live long enough to receive his Certificate but it’s displayed proudly at home.

James passed away on 18th May 2013 at the age of 20, three years after his diagnosis.


Photo of James wearing a straw hat and giving a thumbs up to the camera
The James Gill Memorial Cup dedicated to James by Sports Against Racism Ireland
Gill family on holiday when James was young

The James Gill Memorial Trust

James’ cancer was incredibly rare and his team worked closely with Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) in the US, where there was more knowledge and experience of the tumour. As the disease progressed, one of the family’s only options for James was to enrol him in a trial in MSK, which would cost approximately €85,000. With no funding available from the HSE, James, Geraldine and Declan set about fundraising in their community.

James set the ball rolling, organising their first fundraiser in the space of a few hours out of hospital, with huge support from his friends. Over the next few months, there was a huge response to the fundraising appeal, with support coming not only from all over Ireland (Dublin, Leitrim and Roscommon in particular), but elsewhere in the world too, including London.

Sadly, James passed away before he got to America and his parents turned the fund they had started to raise funds for his treatment into The James Gill Memorial Trust to try to help other families.

It was James’ wish to do up a room in the hospital where families and / or patients could meet and have some time outside of their room or ward. He thought that would be too difficult, so he was willing to settle for a table and chairs in a quiet corner. Geraldine and Declan honoured James’ wish and continued raising money to provide comfortable spaces for families and patients, eventually completing a number of significant projects, including a family room in St. Vincent’s, a chill-out room in the Mater and a new oncology day unit in Tallaght, as well as purchasing vital equipment and sofa beds in Sligo and the North West Hospice.

Hospitals supported by The James Gill Memorial Trust:

  • Vincent’s Hospital
  • Tallaght University Hospital
  • Mater Hospital
  • Sligo University Hospital
  • North West Hospice
  • Luke’s Hospital, Rathgar


“Smile and let everyone know that today, you’re a lot stronger than you were yesterday.”

James Gill

Childhood Cancer Ireland will continue to support adolescents and young adults with cancer, survivors and their families through the James Gill Fund and the legacy of his special young man and his family.

The Gill Family at Tallaght hospital, where they funded a cancer ward
Declan Gill dressed up as a woman for the Women's Mini Marathon