Super Nanny with a cause
"The Starlight Express Room is such a wonderful happy place where sick kids, their siblings and the rest of the family are always made to feel so welcome."
Dianne, at 55-years young, is a proud grandmother of two beautiful boys: Oli, 4 years old, and Will, 1 year old. She'd crossed paths with Starlight before, but it wasn't until Oli was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease that the family started spending time in the Starlight Express Room.
Being in hospital, sick and away from family, was a very emotional and difficult time for Oli. But visits from Captain Starlight in the ICU turned Oli's days from miserable to fun. When he was well enough, visits to the Starlight Express Rooms buoyed Oli's spirits and helped him to take a break from the pain of his illness.
The Captains entertained Oli with cheeky jokes and encouraged him to actively engage in fun activities, as he began to regain his movements. In fact, it was a friendly bet with Oli's favourite Captain Starlight that helped him take his first steps in ten weeks.
Dianne shares, "Until you are thrust into such a situation you don't realise how important the Starlight room is to the children and the families facing these long roads to recovery". Recognising the valuable role that the Captains and the Starlight Express Room played in Oli's recovery, Dianne decided to do something to give back.
Dianne and her daughter registered for the 10km run in Blackmore's Running Festival, just weeks before the event. And due to her role as Oli's carer in hospital, Dianne trained by jogging around the hospital grounds while Oli was in the Starlight Express Room with his family.
And it was a good thing she did because, proudly sporting their Starlight running singlets, Dianne and her daughter ran an incredible race. Kim ran the 10km in 54 minutes and 58 seconds, and Dianne finished the race in 56 minutes and 20 seconds - "not bad for a 56-year-old, I'll catch her next year!"
Grateful for support from friends and family, Dianne and Kim absolutely smashed their fundraising target. Hoping to raise a generous $700, they almost doubled it at $1,258!
Oli is home now and doing so well, and whilst he doesn't miss hospital, he definitely misses his Captain Friends. There are loads of way that you can fundraise to support families like Dianne and Oli's - find out how you can help!
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