Flight For Phoenix

When we first began our fundraising journey so Phoenix and I could attend the 2013 GFPD Conference in the US, we were completely overwhelmed by all the rules and legalities entailed. We were incredibly lucky when through Phoenix’ Early Intervention teacher we were introduced to a local charity called Kids In Need. KIN are an association who raise funds for ill and disabled children. They are truly the heart of our community though relatively unknown. They saw our need for information and support and willingly took us on and opened a trust account so all donations were tax deductable. We found people were more willing to donate their hard earned money when it was going through a registered charity.

We initially set our goal at $10,000 to cover airfare, accommodation, food and everything in between and we were so surprised when almost immediately a group in our area wanted to donate $1,000. What a start!

April 6th was our first ‘official’ fundraiser for Phoenix. It was a sports competition where each team of 7-10 people paid their $200 fee and competed against other each in volleyball, soccer, dodge ball, netball, sand darts and blind volley. We had 10 teams and each wore a different colour. We ran raffles and had a bbq and canteen. Everything was donated, from the winning teams prizes through to all the raffle prizes and all food and drinks. A lot of time and effort went into the day and we raised $3838.80! It was a wonderful day and for the first time realised just how many friends we had behind us wanting the best for Phoenix. We even had our very own Australian Idol Stan Walker compete!

Here is a picture of our team – TEAM PHOENIX

And a few more pictures from the day:

Our 2nd and our biggest fundraiser was our Fair Day. Phoenix attends weekly swimming lessons at Billabong Swim School which he loves. The owners had heard about Phoenix and wanted to help so they, with the help of KIN and myself organised the fair day for May 5th.

Very quickly flyers were printed and we were everywhere! Television crews, magazines and newspapers were interested in a feel good story to send a sweet little boy to the US for support and information on research and medical advice from specialists. Everyone wanted to help!

We had high value items and services donated for our Silent Auction and raffles. We had a monster garage sale! Our local rotary looked after a BBQ while Subway and Raw Energy provided food with 100% of proceeds going to Phoenix.

We had activities for children which cost $2 to participate and included –

Tub Of Fun (Goo!)Sand ArtVelcro Golf (with golf champion Rachel Hetherington)Story TellingSwimming and pool funChildren’s PhotographyFace paintingSES (Emergency Services)Fire Engine (Children could use the fire hose!)PoliceHair Dressing – colour spray and styling

And for the parents… wine toss!

We were incredibly blown away by the support we received. Our volunteers (many I’d never met) were priceless. The community rallied behind us and I was brought to tears by the kind words from strangers. Phoenix was in his element chatting away to everyone. We had over 1500 people throughout the day and raised and amazing $10,500 with more still coming in.

Our grand total, which is rising still, is over $16,500 which is allowing us to have Phoenix’ dad Anaru join us on our trip and visit Disneyland in California for 5 days to make beautiful memories.

We are so thankful to everyone who has made our dream come true.

We have always felt we wanted to give Phoenix the best quality of life there is and we are now able to do that by going to the conference to find out what more we can do for him. KIN are putting the remainder of money raised away for when Phoenix needs equipment such as orthotics and a wheelchair.

– See more at: http://www.thegfpd.org/blog/page/8#sthash.ghApQo3K.dpuf