ASHLEY Cain has revealed keeping his late daughter’s legacy going has helped keep him alive in the wake of her death.
In an exclusive interview the former reality TV star said he would continue fundraising to help other families whose children have cancer.
Ashley and his partner Safiyya Vorajee lost their baby daughter Azaylia in April last year when she was aged just eight-months.
She had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia when she was eight weeks-old.
While her life was cruelly cut short, the tot’s diagnosis and subsequent fundraiser got worldwide attention and a staggering £1.6million was raised in her name in just a few days.
And Ashley says continuing this is now his life goal, with the next challenge a huge charity bike ride in June where he and Safiyya hope to raise thousands for The Azaylia Foundation.
Ashley said: “Exercise and doing this bike ride is something that has kept me here.
“I have struggled a lot and I struggled to find a purpose after Azaylia.
“Raising funds and doing these challenges has given me a purpose again. I feel like I am doing something.
“It is a way for me to release endorphins so I can just get through every day.”
Safiyya added: “You don’t see how much people are suffering.
“Going out and wearing a smile when you feel broken is really hard. We have a purpose, we want to make a change.
“There is so much we do, privately as well as publicly. We speak to so many families behind closed doors and we try and support them on a daily basis.”
However the couple admitted they refuse to allow anyone to stand in their way.
Ashley said: “It doesn’t bother me and the reason it doesn’t bother me is that I am not doing this for public validation
“I am doing this because I am passionate about it. I am doing it because it means everything to me. I am doing it because I want to help.
“So people can say whatever they want to say or try and put whatever blockades they want in my way because I will smash through them all every single time
“Our goal and our ambition is to help the children fighting, help their parents and to make a difference to childhood cancer
“People’s ignorance and opinions don’t affect me. They can have their opinions but it won’t stop me on my goal and it won’t stop me making a difference because that means to me more than the air in my lungs
“Unless you have a gun and you put a bullet through my head – that is the only way to stop me.”
As well as dishing out lump sums of cash to help individual cases – and taking part in different challenges to help children – Safiyya said the money raised has also helped buy life-saving equipment.
She explained: “The Azaylia Foundation has bought equipment which helps research into bloods and can process ten children an hour.
Previously in the lab they could only do two children a day. The community achieved this. “They are already helping so much, it is phenomenal.
“Azaylia is such an inspiration and it is such a heart-warming feeling knowing how much she is helping people.”
The pair now want the community to come together again for a huge cycling event in Cambridgeshire on June 4 and 5.
Thanks to the help of Tour of Cambridgeshire, Ashley and Safiyya have put on the fundraiser which everyone can get involved in.
Ashley added: “For us it is being able to bring together our community so we can thank them too.
“They can be involved in this with us. We are so excited about it.
“Childhood cancer is not rare. And it is about time we all stood up, come together and fight alongside these children. It is an honour to be able to do.”
To take part in Cycle for Azaylia event visit www.cycleforazaylia.com