In an extraordinary show of heart, Riverina Heart Warriors have banded together to raise money for families experiencing the hardships of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD).
Their ‘Riverina Road Trip’ will leave from Griffith to Westmead on October 22, traveling from hospital to hospital on bicycles.
Going on the trip so far is ride organiser Mark Enness, Greg Pattison and Craig Tilston, however more will be confirmed as the departure gets closer.
Riverina Heart Warrior Trish Enness is a pioneer for the group, and her and her families involvement is extremely personal.
“The trip is a total of 683 kilometers, and we hope to stop at schools along the way to raise awareness of CHD and how "life saving" CPR really is, the importance of acceptance, and how bullying can have long term effects.”
"Our families journey with CHD began on September 3, when our daughter AJ, at the age of 15 suffered a sudden cardiac arrest,” she said.
AJ was diagnosed with Long QT Syndrome, which is a disorder of the heart's electrical activity and it can cause dangerous arrhythmias.”
“Whilst at Westmead, we came across Griffith mum Melissa Harris and her daughter Tekia, who will require further operations and treatment as the years pass.
“As there is no financial assistance for CHD sufferers in the Riverina, we have started our Riverina Heart Warriors, Small Kids with Brave Hearts.
“Unfortunately our Riverina Heart Warriors also suffer from other conditions - kidney disease, lung issues, anatomical conditions and more. It is unknown if this is part of their CHD or are side effects of medication used, so this means further trips are required to Sydney. We currently have eight children from Griffith to Grong Grong in our group.”
The Riverina Heart Warriors will be selling "Hearts of Hope" at Griffith Central.
“Presently we are selling "Hearts of Hope" at Griffith Central every Thursday afternoon, Saturday mornings, and Sunday mornings, for the Month of August.
”We hope to run and finalise another raffle before we leave for Westmead on the 22nd of October … the fundraisers we have run recently has allowed the idea of this "Road Trip" to become a reality.
Even though they have received sponsorship from local businesses that has gone a long way to help the Riverina Heart Warriors, every donation is sincerely appreciated.
“We are looking for sponsors or companies who may want to add to our kitty with either prizes for another raffle or donations to fund the ride.