Family and friends of a Leeds woman who needs a life-saving double lung transplant are staging a fundraising event in aid of St James’s Hospital for her 30th birthday this month.
Cystic fibrosis sufferer Jessica Spoor, of Chapel Allerton, is having tests to discover if she is suitable for the transplant she said will give her a “second chance at life.”
Jessica, who was born with the genetic lung disease, enjoyed a full and active life until March when she started suffering from repeated chest infections which meant she had to make the tough decision to leave her job in human resources at Asda in Morley.
Jessica, who studied business and management at the former Leeds Metropolitan University, was a keen runner and gym goer until her health deteriorated.
She now struggles for breath and has to have regular oxygen therapy.
Her family and friends are staging a fundraising birthday party with an auction and raffle at Banyan bar, Leeds on January 12 with money raised donated to the cystic fibrosis ward J6 at St James Hospital, Leeds.
After graduating from university in 2008, Jennifer travelled with friends for six months and visited Nepal, Thailand, New Zealand, Fiji and America.
She started working as a waitress for Arc Inspirations, which runs bars and restaurants in Leeds and Harrogate including Banyan.
After five years Jessica was promoted to general manager of Trio Bar in Headingley.
But she had to leave that job in 2016 for health reasons and move to an office job at Asda, which she will be leaving this month because she is too unwell to continue.
Jessica said she is constantly taking antibiotics to fight chest infections and is always breathless and tired.
She is currently undergoing tests at Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital to find out if she is a suitable candidate to go on the transplant waiting list.
Jessica said: “It would mean everything having a transplant – it would be a second chance at life.
“I have always been independent and done everything for myself and that’s what I want to continue to do.
“I have worked ever since leaving university. I enjoy working, but I have just had to give it up.”
Jessica ran the Great North Run half marathon in 2009 with her younger brother Jack.
Jessica, who was in and out of hospital throughout her childhood in Northumberland, helped raise £9,000 towards a £500,000 appeal to buy equipment for a lung function laboratory in the paediatric unit at Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary. The fundraising party for Jessica’s 30th birthday at Banyan bar in Leeds on January 12 has been organised by friends including Chloe Battle.
It is being staged to help ward J6 for cystic fibrosis patients at St James’s Hospital in Leeds.
More than £2,300 has already been raised towards the £3,000 target.
There will be an auction and raffle and Leeds businesses are being urged to back the event by donating prizes.
Jessica’s lifelong friend Jade Hobbs, 30, said: “Jessica is an inspiration.
“She has always had such a strong, positive attitude towards cystic fibrosis, which she has lived with all her life.
“She is so kind hearted, and would do anything for her friends and family.” Any local businesses which can help the appeal are urged to contact Jessica via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
To donate to the appeal for ward J6 at St James’s Hospital in Leeds, go to Jessica’s Go Fund Me page at www.tinyurl.com/ybap6y75