Today Wishlist launches their third Wishlist Giving Day, a 12-hour digital fundraising appeal to raise funds for Sunshine Coast public hospitals.
The brave face of Wishlist Giving Day, Mountain Creek local Mila Seeley, was five years old at the time and seriously ill with Leukaemia – who received lifesaving treatment at Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
“Processing the message from doctors, I struggled to come to terms this was happening to my beautiful baby girl,” Mila’s Mum J’nae recalled.
“Mila was so skinny and sick when diagnosed. She was so swollen she could barely walk due to some of the medication. Hair loss, weight loss, constant rashes and chronic pain followed.”
Mila faced over two years of gruelling medical treatment including chemotherapy, painful blood tests, transfusions, dressing changes and numerous invasive procedures.
In the midst of treatment, Mila was introduced to the Wishlist-funded local Clown Doctors service.
“It may not sound like much but as a mother feeling completely helpless when your child is begging you to make medical staff stop, I cannot express in words how much the Clown Doctors helped distract and settle Mila on the hard days,” she said.
“Mila also had some very special experiences with Norman the Therapy Dog and Stacey the Calm Fairy. Through their interactions with Mila, her anxiety reduced significantly.”
Wishlist CEO Lisa Rowe said the appeal has become a Coast favourite from health staff to local businesses who rally all their friends to be part of this special day.
“The best part about making a donation on Giving Day is your money will be doubled thanks to generous local businesses, also known as our ‘Matchers’. This means you will help twice the families experiencing a medical crisis,” Ms Rowe said.
“Today we are aiming to raise over $200,000 to fund a very long ‘wish list’ including three Point of Care Ultrasounds for our emergency departments, vital support services like the local Clown Doctors service, Calm Fairies and music therapy at Dove Palliative Care, and crucial items to fit-out Wishlist Centre to ensure every guest has a comfortable stay, but there’s so much more.
“We are so lucky to have on board Walter Iezzi Property Group, the McDowell family, Sunshine Toyota, Just Better Care, Protector Aluminium, Project Urban, Conbuild and Harry & Margaret Reed matching every cent the community fundraise.”
Fortunately, after many tears and long hours on hospital wards, Mila is now in remission, and remains one of the thousands of patients who has been provided some comfort during an exhausting and traumatic time.
“We are just one of many families that are eternally thankful for Wishlist and the services they provide. Round up your family and friends today, and even if it’s a couple of dollars, donate it so you can make double the difference,” J’nae said.
Donating is easy, just visit wishlist.org.au and follow the prompts. Or phone the office on (07) 5202 1777.