RCH Foundation News : January 2016
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Thank you for your support of The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) Foundation over the holidays.

Nikita’s inspiring story is a testament to the great care that children and their families receive at the hospital. Born with long gap oesophageal atresia, a very rare condition whereby her oesophagus and stomach were not connected, Nikita couldn’t swallow her own saliva without choking. A successful but high-risk operation bridged the gap and changed Nikita's life.

Amazing outcomes like this are possible because of generous people like you. Thank you.

If you weren't able to donate before Christmas — there’s still time! Click the button below to donate and help change the future of children’s health.


WWII veterans the Rats of Tobruk visited the RCH to meet the latest Neurology Fellow named in their honour.

The annual Rats of Tobruk Fellow is possible thanks to a $1.5 million donation from the “Rats”, which is held in perpetuity. It is an applied training position for up-and-coming neurologists. With a shortage of paediatric neurologists in Australia, this role provides a valuable education opportunity and offers an additional resource for the busy inpatient and outpatient neurology facilities.

The incoming Fellow is Ian Woodcock, an experienced paediatric neurology trainee who’s already impressing the team with his strong work ethic and talent. He’s grateful to the Rats of Tobruk for their generosity, which allows him to delve into his special interest: neuromuscular disorders.

Ian thanked the Rats of Tobruk for supporting his neurology fellowship at the RCH this year. "It has been such a great learning experience and I am so lucky to have been given this opportunity to work with, and learn from, international experts in the different fields of paediatric neurology.”


Raising $258 to help the hospital, Chloe is not only a Fundraising Superhero, she’s also an awesome big sister!

Chloe’s little brother Finn has been an RCH patient since he was six weeks old. He was born with a condition called severe laryngomalacia, where laryngeal tissue like the epiglottis are malformed and “floppy”, causing the tissue to cover and obstruct the airway. Each time this happened, Finn was unable to breath. After a particularly bad episode, Finn was admitted to the RCH, undergoing surgery to remove the malformed tissue.

Inspired to fundraise for the RCH “because they were so good to Finn”, Chloe, her mum and her grandmother hand crafted babushka dolls which were a big hit at Chloe’s school market. According to mum, Chloe is pleased that her first fundraising venture was such a success. Great work Chloe!


When applying for an Apprentice Plumber Grant from water-heating specialists Rheem, Quaide Comi did something special for the RCH.

Asked what he would do with the $1,000 grant money, Quaide stated that half would support his plumbing education, and the other half would be donated to the RCH. Quaide was partly inspired to support the hospital because of his partner, a nurse who will soon be working at the RCH.

Rheem were so impressed by Quaide’s generosity that they donated $500 to the RCH Foundation in his name, allowing him to use the full grant for professional development.

“The CEO of Rheem even got involved, sending me a note saying ‘Well done Quaide!’ I’ve been in and out of a hospital at times, so I understand what it’s like and just wanted to do something to help sick kids go home healthy.”


Heart Throb Auxiliary are celebrating 21 years of proudly funding and organising camps for cardiac patients from the RCH and across the country.

Called Koala Camps after the Koala Cardiac Ward, the camps are a chance for young people with serious heart conditions to make great memories and lifelong friends. Given the seriousness of their conditions, the camps give RCH patients fun-filled experiences they may not otherwise be able to participate in.

Thanks to the dedicated Koala Ward staff who donate their time and medical expertise to ensure camps are a success, participants have an opportunity to connect with peers on a similar RCH journey, who understand what they are going through. The camps make such an impression that many participants return as Junior Leaders, mentoring campers and supporting the staff.

The 21st camp was held at the YMCA in Anglesea and was attended by 41 children from across Australia. The campers has a chance to go fishing, canoeing, surfing, host a concert and see the Werribee Open Range Zoo.


Run Donna Run
Run Your Own Race with Run Donna Run is a virtual fundraiser that anyone can participate in whenever and wherever they are! Simply sign up online and complete a run of your chosen distance at your own pace before 29 February. If you want to run with Donna at the main event, it will take place in Rosebud on Australia Day.

Note: the wrong link was mistakenly included in the previous Run Donna Run article. Our apologies for the error.

Britney's Run
Britney is running from her hometown of Mansfield to the RCH in April 2016 to fundraise for the hospital’s maxillofacial clinic, which provided great care to her sister Zoe. Zoe was born with a bilateral Tessier facial cleft and continues to undergo craniofacial surgeries at the RCH. Britney hopes to raise $200K for the 200kms she'll be running to help other RCH kids like Zoe.

Biggest Game of Cricket
The Ponting Foundation's Biggest Game of Cricket is going in to bat for RCH kids with cancer and you can help! Get a team together for a casual or competitive game of cricket and encourage friends, family and colleagues to support your event! For more on hosting a charity cricket match and how to maximise your fundraising, visit the Biggest Game of Cricket website.