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Join in the Walk for Prems

SMILES: The Mitchell family of Mareeba – Kane and Tonya with baby girl Makinlee who was born prematurely. PHOTO by Bee Exposed Photography.

ALL across Australia, people will come together at the end of October to raise money in support of premature and sick babies born in Australia.

The ‘Walk for Prems’ will be held on Sunday, October 27 along the Cairns Esplanade and will be part of a nation wide walk in the hope of raising $350,000 to support premature and sick babies.

Each year more than 48,000 premature or sick babies are born in Australia and for the families of the babies this can mean extreme physical, emotional and mental stress.

Walk for Prems is the largest annual fundraiser for the ‘Life’s Little Treasures Foundation’, Australia’s foremost charity dedicated to supporting the families of babies born sick or prior to 37 weeks gestation.

Now in its tenth year, Walk for Prems will be conducted simultaneously all across the country in all major cities, plus regional locations.

Mareeba resident Tonya Mitchell and her family will be joining in the walk at the end of the month and hopes to see many others join in.

“This will be my second year walking, my daughter was born prematurely last year, so I’m also walking for her,” said Mrs Mitchell.

“I’ll be walking with some close friends and family on the day.”

Mrs Mitchell is currently the highest solo fundraiser in the whole of Australia, raising $2,194.40, with the second highest solo fundraiser boasting $1,950 out of Sydney.

There are currently 53 solo participants registered for the walk in Cairns and Mrs Mitchell hopes to see that number grow with the day drawing nearer and nearer.

“There aren’t a lot of participants registered at the moment,” she said.

“But hopefully that number will grow closer to the walk date as people come out to support a great fundraiser.

“They smashed their money goal last year of $300,000, so this year’s goal of $350 000 isn’t out of the ballpark.”

Mrs Mitchell is encouraging people to come out and raise money on the day because you never know if you’ll need their support.

“The foundation helped me out when my daughter was born – they sent care packages with information and clothing to fit her,” she said.

“Get behind it because you never know if you’ll need their support.

“I never thought it in a million years that I would need their support, a healthy pregnancy and discharged two days later, I ended up staying seven weeks.”

The walk will start at 8:30am at Funship Parklands on the Esplanade and will begin after a moment of silence to remember the babies who passed away, accompanied with the releasing of white doves.

Activities and entertainment will be available after the walk where participants can relax.

People can register for Walk for Prems at www.walkforprems.org.au with prices ranging from $18 to $7 depending on age.

If you cannot make the walk but still want to help raise money for premature and sick babies, you can donate online at www.walkforprems.org.au/locations/virtual-walk/ to become a virtual walker and help raise money for a worthy cause.

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