By Keiran Southern, PA
A GoFundMe page set up to help pay for Big Brother star Nikki Grahame’s eating disorder treatment has been reopened so fans can raise money for her funeral.
Grahame, who rose to fame following a stint as a contestant on the Channel 4 show in 2006, died on Friday aged 38.
She had been receiving treatment for an eating disorder at a specialist clinic following a fundraising campaign organised by friends and fans.
The GoFundMe page has been reopened, with money going towards Grahame’s funeral costs and a charity helping people suffering from eating disorders.
The page has so far raised almost £69,000.
Writing on the GoFundMe website, Grahame’s close friends Carly Cunningham and Leon Dee said: “We just wanted to let you know that we are turning donations back on for anyone that would like to make a donation in Nikki’s memory, as lots of people have been asking if they can still donate.
“An amount will be used for the funeral costs and the remaining funds will be used to go towards an organisation that helps those suffering with eating disorders, the crucial funding that has been lacking to help people in these awful situations has not been addressed, we will use this money to the best of our ability to try and stem this horrific, debilitating illness.
“We also would like to thank people who have sent private messages with lovely words about Nikki, she would be so thankful.”
The charity to benefit from the money is yet to be decided.
Grahame finished fifth on the seventh series of Big Brother but is widely seen as one of the show’s best-known and most popular contestants.
She published two autobiographies, Dying To Be Thin and Fragile, and documented how she developed anorexia while still a teenager.
She battled the illness for the rest of her life and spent time in hospital on a number of occasions.
Sue Grahame, her mother, appeared on This Morning last month and said her daughter’s condition deteriorated after gyms closed during the pandemic.
Former Big Brother host Davina McCall, Grahame’s ex-partner Pete Bennett and the show’s long-time narrator Marcus Bentley all paid tribute following her death.