A year of fun WWW.CHALLENGE.ORG.AU
E G N E L L A CH FACTFILE WHAT IS CHALLENGE?
Sunset over Corryong! – Page
Challenge is a non-profit organisation which was established in 1983 to provide children living with cancer and other life-threatening blood disorders with an opportunity to put their illness aside and interact with other children in similar circumstances. Our organisation offers services for our families 365 days a year, which include camps, family activities, hospital and parent support, financial support, holiday accommodation and an extensive ticketing program. Challenge is committed to ensuring children and families living with cancer and other life-threatening blood disorders are continually supported, from the time of diagnosis, through the treatment period and beyond. We do this by providing our members with quality tailored programs, which make life enjoyable for children and families during the challenges and uncertainties of fighting their illness. With an emphasis on fun, all our activities promote family unity and encourage the formation of support networks, a vital component in the healing process. Challenge strongly believes that children and families who are offered positive experiences are better able to cope with the pressures of a life-threatening illness.
INSIDE CHALLENGE The name Inside Challenge was chosen for this magazine because it is a wonderful way of keeping children, families, volunteers and members of the community up-to-date on the happenings at Challenge and on the direction the program is taking. It provides us with an opportunity to: • Learn about each other • Exchange information Sports Central – Page
• Share our experiences • Develop friendships • Keep our supporters and the community informed about our programs.
TO HELP You can help Challenge in a variety of ways. You can make a donation, volunteer your time, donate goods and services, or organise an auction item for our next fundraising event. Your business can also make a difference by incorporating Challenge in any fundraising programs. You can even help just by talking about Challenge and by letting people know who we are and what we do! Donations to Challenge are Tax Deductible. Whether it is a donation of two dollars or twenty dollars, you can claim it on your tax. Cheques should be made payable to Challenge: a cancer support network and sent to: Awesome Waterskills – Page
Chief Executive Officer David Rogers Editor Corinne Said The Leuk saga Mark Knight Design Edit Media Further information A publication of: Challenge Challenge House 529-535 King St West Melbourne, Victoria Australia 3003. Cover Image Andy meets Matt
All donations, advertising, story contributions and editorial enquiries should be directed to the Challenge Office on (03) 9329 8474 or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org The views, opinions and advice expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and contributors, and not necessarily those of, or endorsed by, the Challenge Committee. All materials appearing in this magazine remain the property of Challenge and are not to be reproduced without the express permission of the Chief Executive Officer.
Challenge Challenge House 529-535 King St, West Melbourne, Victoria 3003. A receipt will then be forwarded to you.
Features Sunset over Corryong They say all good things must come to an end. To refer to Corryong Camp as a “good thing” is a massive understatement. Always held in the warm month of January Corryong Camp kick started the Challenge camping year and became an iconic part of the Challenge calendar. Sadly after 19 years, the Hogg family have called it a day on this wonderful camp and everyone who has ever attended one of these camps will know that the Hogg family are “Camp Corryong”; no argument.
Hurray FOR HAMILTON CAMP
Junior Camp 1
Sports Central The Trevor Barker Sports Camp was non-stop action and included just about every sport you can think of and some that you didn’t even know existed! We arrived at Urban Camp (the place we were going to stay, not the camp itself!) not knowing what was in store for us and from there it was non stop action!
Awesome Waterskills My first camp with Challenge was the Waterskills Camp. Now that I have finished my first camp it has definitely encouraged me to go on more, to have lots of fun and to meet new people. After leaving Challenge House the three mini buses and the Challenge van took what seemed the longest possible way through the city, to arrive at the National Water Sports Centre. There we were greeted by the Carrum Ski Club and the Navy!
My brother Julian and I were looking forward to Hamilton Camp and were counting down the days from the time we got the Challenge flier right up to when we hopped on to the bus and said goodbye to mum!
I was lucky enough to be chosen to go on Junior Camp 1 this year. On the morning of the camp I felt really excited. We got into the car and drove a little way before I realised that I didn’t have my teddy. So we turned around and went back home to get him and then continued on to Challenge House.
We left Challenge House by bus in the early evening and settled in for the long drive, catching up with other kids on our bus that we’d met on previous camps. It didn’t seem to take that long because we had lots of fun mucking around and talking about the other camps. After a great afternoon and night we finally hit the sack and were excited about the riding we were going to do the next day.
We were stoked! We had been invited to the MASSIVE Challenge Urban Camp..... We arrived at Urban Camp all excited and met a whole lot of new people, found our rooms, explored the campsite, settled in and sat down to a big dinner. After filling our stomachs, we met a mad magician called Crazy Pete. He performed tricks that had our minds confused and our brains dazzled. After lots of amazement, we headed off to bed and gave ourselves a long rest because we knew we had a big week ahead of us.
what's inside? REGULARS
4 5 6 8 9 10 78 78 81
Bloke in Charge Challenge Dates Head to Head A whole Lot of Hospital! A Monash Update Challenge Playgroup Reflections and Thanks Condolences Letters to Leuk
12 13 13 18 19 22 22 24 24
Barwon River 'Learn to ski day' The ‘heart’ of the Yarra Valley AAMI Classic Sailing the Young Endeavour Remembering Bruce Splash and Play day A Weekend Pass Bands to benefit Challenge The perfect way to spend a Monday!
28 28 29 33 34
35 36 37 38 40 45 46
Georgia Meets Hi-5 Getting Loud at the Grand Prix Keeping Cancer at Bay Ladies who lunch Surfers freeze their plums off for Challenge Melton Valley Golf Day Wild About Willy A day on the bay! Logies reunion The Best Night Ever DUC Day Out Diamonds Dinner
50 51 51
Up all night! Toy Story 3 The Final Chapter Going casual for a cause at Austock A Big Aussie (Mag)pie Night On the Ground with Melbourne Heart
56 56 57 58 59 59 60 62 64
Women for Challenge Time to recharge The Time of their Life Carnegie Community Spirit Footy Mad! Highly anticipated High Tea Junior Camp 2 Ride 4 Kids
Neighbours should be there for one another and they are
The Industry of Food Unites to Support Challenge!
Biggest Aussie Pie Night
66 67 68 69 73 74 76
Despicable Me DUC Day Out at AAMI Stadium Getting a Rush The best day of my life... So far.. Hats off for Trivia Welcome to the Fun house A Family Journey
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 3
bloke in charge Welcome to another issue of Inside Challenge. I can’t believe it has been so long since the last edition, and I am sorry it’s taken so long to get this issue out to you all.
What a mad and crazy year it has been! After a lot of thought, we felt that a Bumper Edition was necessary and we have also redesigned it to be a look at 2010 in retrospect. January saw the final Corryong Camp after 19 years. The Hogg Family and the Corryong and surrounding communities should be extremely proud of all that they achieved in that time. What amazing memories we will all have from such a wonderful annual camp! More than 1000 campers and volunteers experienced the beauty of the area and the thrill of many mind-blowing activities, so many thanks to everyone involved. What will we all do on that second weekend in January…? We at Challenge are very fortunate to meet and get to know so many wonderful people who support us in so many different ways. This year has been no different, and through these pages you will read some incredible stories of individual experiences which really are only some of the highlights from our year. We’ve done lots more and I hope that those who were involved in making those things possible enjoyed the experience as much as the kids and families. I know the people you helped had awesome experiences.
This year we lost one of our nearest and dearest volunteers, Bruce Johnstone, who was not only our oldest volunteer but also one of our most committed, always willing to lend a hand wherever it was needed. Bruce brightened the world with his smile and his theories about the world. He will be sadly missed and we are all a little poorer for not having him with us. As Bruce would say though, “it’s the marvellous young people that make the difference Dave and inspire me every day”. Rest in peace my friend. I will miss the chats, your teachings and the life lessons. For Challenge to achieve what it does, many fundraising events must take place and many, many people make huge sacrifices to make those happen. Throughout the pages of this magazine you will see so much hard work done by some incredible people. To Pauline Vernon and her team, thank you for your unwavering support. To all at the Foodservice Industry Association, we are so grateful for your continued and very generous support. To the Carnegie Bears for their amazing Biggest Aussie Pie Night and to the beautiful women of the LINC High Tea – thank you for your hard work and effort in supporting Challenge.
I often get asked about what people can do to help, and you never know just what you can do. Some individuals live incredible lives which to them are normal but to somebody else would be a dream come true and their “holy grail”. So nothing is off limits…
Although these are just a few examples, this magazine is full of amazing stories about individuals and companies who continue to overwhelm me with their commitment and generosity. For most though, it is not about being thanked – it is about what they are able to make possible for our kids and families.
A great example of that was a very unusual request from one of our kids who is obsessed with garbage trucks. Through the support of his local council Challenge was able to make his dream come true of riding in the local garbage truck through his own street, picking up the bins of his family and his neighbours. Who would have thought!
Challenge is about to enter a new phase with the renovation of Challenge House, to include the Challenge Family Centre. What we already do will not change and if anything, it will grow, but we will also be able to offer support in even more ways.
For me, seeing Jamie run out with the Collingwood Football Club during the Grand Final replay will go down as a very special moment. For Jamie to stand on the hallowed turf of the MCG and take in the atmosphere of 90,000 screaming fans – wow! Little do people know that it took a whole lot of mental and physical energy for Jamie to be able to do that, but it was definitely life changing for him. The heart and soul of Challenge is about providing camps and activities for our kids and families and we have managed to organise so many wonderful opportunities. Without our amazing group of volunteers however, this would not be possible. There is an unspoken assumption that what Challenge does just happens, but it takes a lot of hard work and effort by those that give up their weekends and school holidays to make it possible for us to help our members. These individuals are truly inspirational and at the end of the day it is all about putting a smile on faces.
4 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Please take the time to read through this latest issue of Inside Challenge – you certainly won’t be disappointed. I’m just sorry that we didn’t get it out earlier for you all to enjoy – but we were too busy making all the stories happen! Continue to enjoy all that Challenge has to offer you and your family and if there is ever anything that you and your family or friends can do to help our organisation in any way please give us a call. We are always extremely humbled and honoured by any assistance that we receive. Until the next Challenge camp, event or activity, please keep safe, stay happy and I look forward to catching up with you and your family soon. David Rogers Challenge CEO
CALENDAR DATES February
Sunday 6th Saturday 5th – orts Camp Trevor Barker Sp Saturday 19th Lunch Bendigo Mums Monday 21st Golf Day Brodie Daniels
Friday 4th – Sunday 6th Waterskills C amp Saturday 12 th Geelong Mu ms Lunch Saturday 26 th Diamonds C lub Lunch
Saturday 14th – Sunday 15th MUMS RETREAT
3rd - Sunday d n 2 y a Saturd treat Mums Re ay 17th th – Sund 4 1 y a d s Thur Camp Hamilton 30th Saturday ch Day Lun Mothers
Saturday 4th – Sunday 5th JUNIOR CAMP 1
Thursday 16th Diamonds are a Girls’ Best Friend Gala Din ner Saturday 18th Wangaratta M ums Lunch Saturday 25th – Sunday 26th Mums Retreat
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 5
head 2 head
With Tom Gleisner
Jordan Margariti Name
How did you feel?
When I went in I kind of knew something wasn’t right. But I guess I didn’t really know what it was, I wasn’t really sure.
What happened next?
We went to the Children’s Hospital. My oncologist explained everything that would be happening. First thing was chemo.
Year 10 at Buckley Park College, Essendon.
Best Subjects Maths & Science.
Worst Subject Art. I’m just not really an arty sort of person.
What was that like? It wasn’t very pleasant at all. Towards the end it got a little easier because you kind of knew what to expect, but the start wasn’t great. The trick is to find something to do. I picked up the guitar. I also got quite good at card tricks.
What did you most miss when you were in hospital?
Footy, cricket, swimming, PlayStation.
Contact with my friends. It’s still there, but it’s limited.
How did you get involved with Challenge?
Micka used to come into my room and we’d play cards. Challenge also organised for me to go to the Formula One Grand Prix.
Least Favourite Food Don’t have one – I’ll eat pretty much anything.
When did you first get sick? July 2009. I was playing footy and felt discomfort in my leg when running. We went to the doctor who thought it was a muscle problem but an MRI showed that I had a tumour in my leg. I had a biopsy that showed it was cancer – osteosarcoma. 6 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Just finally, what advice would you give to someone else about to start treatment? Take it as it comes.
head 2 head
With Tom Gleisner
Ananke Arneaud Name
When did you first get sick?
Preston Primary School.
In August 2009 I think. At first I had a sore leg, my Mum thought I was just trying to get out of school, but we went to the doctors for a blood test, then I got an earache, then I fell asleep and I had to go to hospital because I had leukemia.
Any brothers or sisters?
Did you know what that is?
I have a 3 year old brother Griffin and we have another one on its way that comes in October.
I didn’t really know. They said it was a type of sickness.
What about pets? We have 3 cats: Gingey, Carpet and Fred.
What do you like doing in your spare time? Playing the computer, mainly World of Warcraft. I used to ride a scooter. I also like watching Pokemon.
What happened next? I had to stay in hospital, there were drips in my hand and I started having chemo which was pretty yukky.
Is there any advice you would give to someone else who has just been diagnosed? I would advise them that it’s okay because everything will be done, you just need to forget about worrying and relax.
In winter my Dad’s fish, in summer ice-cream.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 7
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
A whole lot of HoedsatptheitRoayallChildren’s
so much has happen It feels like we say this often, but is no exaggeration! Hospital in the last few months it
to the Where’s Wally also made a quick visit two very hospital the in We led off with a special visit from be to en happ you If ital. hosp Megan can find well known guests – Andy Lee and over the coming months see if you who on g ndin depe y And Gale (or Megan and …. ward him hiding on the zing is telling the story)! These two ama maybe later and Cooking continues to be a hit and personalities visited Challenge in May cooking her anot the pt all of s attem face can in the year we brought many a smile to the r through suffe loved can guys ward the The . then ward until the week – kids and parents on a past , we were occasional wafts of chocolate pizza Megan and the girls loved Andy so a just e nam to uits bisc sauce, cup cakes and able to keep everyone happy as both story a ing shar few. wandered down the hallways t when inue to be and a laugh or two. Andy was upse Trampoline and Krispy Kreme cont and Megan is found Tom tried to take Megan from him ach stom ty emp an r a hit and neve beautiful gh to enou y wasn’t so impressed at how many luck are we n whe days e on thos Thanks er and bigg photos Andy had taken with Natalie! ng getti enjoy them! Pizza Friday is your time e leng Chal heaps Andy and Megan for sharing ths mon few bigger and in the last s. ts talen their and bringing a smile to the kid’s face show s chef ial spec e has had som zing er Cronk and they have produced some ama During Easter our good friend Coop be popular er East e som do to in e cam pizzas. Pizza beetles still prove to Storm from the and ham g le ethin simp a som s try although nothing beat activities. We thought we would e Hom at a Pizz to this ks ing Than leng bo! chal pineapple com a little different and more s for a . good the yolks all the ly out supp ing to g blow inuin and cont for year; egg colouring very popular (and delicious) day. tice prac of bit a After It was messy but fun! d’s and treat. It can get tough living on McDonal Cooper had the eggs looking a real th with mon y little ever a er hospital cafeteria food, so Thanks for all your help making East more fun in the ward. 8 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Yering the help of our long time friends at provide a we in Mart rew And Station and Chef with plete com l mea ity qual t restauran beautiful wine for our parents. someone Is there anything better than having of glass cook for you, pour a nice cold dishes? the do to ng havi something and not at every l exce to g inuin cont is in Andrew Mart culinary lar Parent Dinner, producing spectacu erts dess His s. delights on a monthly basi ks to aren’t too shabby either! Many than meals our are prep who team his Andrew and t feas er so that our parents can enjoy a prop out help who rs ntee and to the dedicated volu while their each month and entertain the kids the from k brea ed earn well a parents have . ward If you are on the ward and have any do or questions, would like something to and he a Mick find h, simply a movie to watc any have you If ice. serv will be at your lenge suggestions or thoughts on how Chal – Micka too can help you please let him know and can he re whe help is more than happy to ! book blue little his in s idea scribble a few
e t a d p U h s a n o AM
place to be! Centre playroom at Monash is the cer Can s en’ ildr Ch the n the , ion If you want act ren engaging It is always a buzz of noise with child e thos do boy and s tivitie in games or ac r contain neve can You out. work a get ons PlayStati reach ren child the the shrieks of excitement when t mos the bly roba e. P the next level on a gam teach the rewarding thing is watching the kids they are – e gam the ter mas to how other kids nts. pare the definitely the best teachers, not n maker and it We have also tested our new muffi Chef look out, ter has been a great success. Mas s and they chef ing budd of p we have a new grou ty of varie a e mak ren child The are brilliant! maker and eat n muffi the in them bake , ures mixt cool! The them before they even have time to has been e Krem y Krisp ongoing support from achs of stom the fill to way ome another welc ward. Who the on ren child and nts pare ng waiti coffee (or hot doesn’t like a tasty donut with their ing?! chocolate) in the morn finished after Our group mosaic has finally been has proudly and tion bora colla months of work and see. Our to all for room play the in layed been disp of a ork artw budding artist designed a soothing d. worl the in care a out child surfing a wave with the te crea to in d joine who Thanks to everyone aic should be wonderful masterpiece. What mos idea. an next? Let Sonia know if you have r hit the CCC What else happened? Well footy feve ion and pass the and as the season progressed mond) or Rich and ood ingw support increased (Coll nding depe ) bers Bom the and bane declined (Bris was thing mon on how teams were going. One com their put to er ladd everyone changing the footy team at the top! window with A jungle theme also took over the nut trees, coco , keys mon of fabulous creations fabulous a even and birds l urfu colo elephants, ! The play work t string of folded cranes. What grea ren’s child the with room always looks fabulous ows. wind and walls the g creations decoratin to offer for all Challenge as always has so much of the year. All th mon y ever ly fami members of the for you to read the flyers are displayed on the wall event as we any t and feel free to ask Sonia abou . lved invo would love for you to get
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 9
W hat an exciting year 2010 has been for Challenge Playgroup. With our Frankston Playgroup in full swing we now have double the fun !
Challenge House, 10am – no
use is now Our playgroup held at Challenge Ho new room. on a Monday and we even have a How wonderful!
lies this We have welcomed some new fami family any e invit to like still ld wou year and group age 2-5 with patients or siblings in the ren child The well. as in to come along and join as such ities activ in ge enga run in ready to inside painting, play doh, collage, puzzles, slide, music and stories. wonderful Our wall is covered with an array of our and ges paintings, butterfly prints, colla The e. hom like feel does super sea display. It s cake e mad e hom and nos ucci smell of capp the all s and slices for morning tea even bring y to see Challenge staff visiting. It is also lovel y enjo and e com grandmas and dads Playgroup as well.
er Easter was a wonderful time with East very a from visit rise activities and a surp s were generous Easter bunny. Our mum and gifts with Day er’s Moth for d pere pam hugs.
What more could you want? “Masci Well….. Rhonda and Monique from a with pped equi well e Hair & Spa” cam nail and ns lotio ls, towe hot bed, massage a relaxing polish. All the mums were spoilt with the little Even . icure back massage and a man nails their had they as tten girls were not forgo Masci to h muc so you k Than well. as painted for pampering our beautiful mums.
e g n e l l a Ch
10 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
Friday Lewis St in Frankston, 10am
new Playgroup in Frankston 2010 saw the introduction of our nash Medical Centre. to support our families from the Mo a The Frankston Playgroup has been coming lies fami of wonderful success with lots more for ing look ys alwa regularly and we are you if e leng Chal call se plea so s smiling face y the enjo to g alon ing com in d este inter are opportunity fun! Similarly the children have the also the and ities activ p grou to experience play was er East . area play oor outd an benefit of and the ities activ er East with well as ing excit g Easter Easter bunny hopping in and hidin eggs in our garden. from For Mother’s Day the lovely ladies kston Fran in r Mye with Lancôme together , over e mak a with s mum our d pampere were ren child perfume and goodie bag. The a in lged indu all spoilt with toys and we so much to beautiful morning tea. Thank you Colin for and ifer Jenn ia, Sask ina, Lisa, Edw gh to have enou their generosity. We were lucky finish off to yl Sher with a playball skills session and ren child by yed enjo was the term which . alike parents
Special day out at the Melbourne Aquarium ed to have All our Playgroup families were invit e ourn Melb the of tour ed guid a special kids were ed excit ty Twen l. Apri in arium Aqu p each met by Lai and Colin who took a grou world. rsea unde tiful beau the on a discovery of met they hen up w lit s face ren’s The child told Nemo and all his friends and we were ies of spec rent diffe wonderful stories about the to ities rtun oppo of ty plen fish. The kids had s, urite favo their t abou tions ques ask lots of of that and they certainly made the most stingrays and ks opportunity! Penguins, shar touch the to got even we were highlights and the tour the After s. turtle baby starfish and in the early play to gh enou y luck were ren child activities. education room with many hands-on was The only downside was that no one ture crea sea urite allowed to take their favo ks to than huge A …. time next home. Maybe for giving arium Aqu e ourn Melb the at everyone had so us such a wonderful morning, we much fun!
p u o r g y a Pl
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 11
’ y a d i k s o t n r a e ‘L W hen Challenge called and invited me to come skiing on the Barwon River one Saturday before Christmas, I jumped at the chance.
It’s a day they hold each year, with the Barwon Valley Waterski Club, where kids and families can come along and learn how to ski, or kneeboard, or just sit in a boat or a biscuit. My family and I arrived and were excited to see that the club had pulled out all the stops and we had our choice of riding on a jetski, learning to waterski or kneeboarding. Firstly, I jumped into a boat and had a very relaxing time watching some kids try to master the art of kneeboarding. They did get the hang of it eventually and we headed back into “base” to swap passengers. While the kids were out making noise on the water, mums and dads had a choice of relaxing quietly on the bank of the river, or cruising around in the back of the boats. You
12 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
can imagine which option most of them took – anything for some peace and quiet! After giving it my all on the kneeboard and then trying my hand at skiing, my muscles were telling me it was time for a break and my tummy said the break should include some food! Luckily, there was a delicious smell in the air already, and the sausages and hamburgers were delicious! We didn’t stop for long though, and jumped straight back into the boats after we’d wiped the tomato sauce away. I headed for the jetski and had a great time ripping up the river with the driver – we went so fast, it was awesome. After a surprise visit from Santa, who gave us each a big bag of lollies (to keep our energy
up of course!) we had another turn on our favourite activity – mine was kneeboarding. Then it was time to start packing up. No one wanted to leave because we were all having such a great time, but the boats had been going since pretty early and we figured the drivers could use a rest! We thanked Callan and everyone from the Ski Club who had come down to make the day possible and for showing us such a good time. The club has been supporting Challenge kids and families for many years, by holding this day and it was great fun! After that, we piled into the car and made our way home for some well-earned rest! Maybe we’ll see you on the river later this year!
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
The ‘heart’ of the Yarra Valley In the heart of the Yarra Valley there is a winery owned by a very special family, the Rathbones, who have supported Challenge and children and families with cancer for a very long time. This winery also has the acclaim of being the oldest in Victoria – it is Yering Station. Each year, the need for our services continues to grow and it is only with the help of friend and supporters like Doug and Ann Rathbone that we have been able to expand our program to make sure our mums and dads are also well looked after. Yering Station helps us in a myriad of ways. Every December, they throw open their doors to welcome a group of Challenge mums for a Christmas lunch to rival any other. Sitting and talking with some lovely mums, sipping from
your glass of Yering wine while overlooking the glorious Yarra Valley – this is the perfect day! Ann Rathbone makes our Women for Challenge Christmas Mum’s lunch a reality by allowing our mums the opportunity to enjoy an afternoon overlooking the Yarra Valley and a meal at their renowned restaurant matched by exquisite wines. They are always able to accommodate us which we are so grateful for. As any restaurant owner will tell you, December is probably the most manic month
with many places booked out and extremely busy but Yering Station always manages to make this day special for our mums and it’s never too much trouble for the gracious staff. Aside from the unparalleled generosity for our parent support program, they also ensure that our fundraising efforts are maximised through their sponsorship of our annual Challenge Ball. Their quality wine selection is a talking point at each event. Thank you, Yering Station, for your very generous support.
t tennis players to January brings the best of the bes tournament of the year. Australia for the first Grand Slam the players Before the Australian Open starts rent participate in a number of diffe tournaments around the country in s preparation. For more than ten year the been have bers mem our and e Challeng and Kelly guests of the wonderful Marie the annual legendary promoter Colin Stubbs at nt. ame tourn AAMI Classic male The AAMI Classic invites the Top 10 ate clim n ralia Aust the to used get players to tennis is The ong. Kooy at skills their hone and very always of a very high standard and
flock enjoyable for the large crowds who to see it. y enough to Over the years we have been luck ers, play best d’s meet some of the worl er, Roger Raft ick Patr si, including Andre Agas been a has h whic , dick Rod y And Federer and . massive thrill for the kids involved are a So get ready for January and if you so we know us let you sure tennis fan make to this you duce intro and g alon can invite you year’s best of the best…
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 13
! All smiles at Corryong Camp
Corryong By David Verlander
They say all good things must come to an end. To refer to Corryong Camp as a “good thing” is a massive understatement. Always held in the warm month of January Corryong Camp kick started the Challenge camping year and became an iconic part of the Challenge calendar. This 5-day experience was very popular amongst both kids and leaders and anyone that attended was keen to put in a repeat performance the following year! Sadly after 19 years, the Hogg family have called it a day on this wonderful camp and everyone who has ever attended one of these camps will know that the Hogg family are “Camp Corryong”; no argument. And if you do argue, Ash Hogg may just have to pay you a little visit and you don’t want that! I have been lucky enough to be a leader on about seven of these camps and have also had my daughter attend as a child and now as a leader.
Day 1: Friday 15th January We all met at Challenge House early on the Friday morning. Kids, bags, sleeping bags and pillows were everywhere ready to be packed into the buses. The usual mix of anxious, worried and excited parents were waiting to wave their kids off. All packed up and ready to go, the kids waved goodbye, some with tears in their eyes and others with excitement for what lay ahead. 14 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Just before midday we arrived in Albury, legs were stretched and the kids kicked footballs, threw frisbees or just relaxed in the warm country sunshine. The Hogg family arrived with the first of many “massive feeds” which included chicken, burgers, salads and plenty of cool refreshing drinks. We used to enjoy this delicious fare on board the PSS Cumberoona paddle steamer, and then for a couple of years we visited the Fish Farm for a waterslide ride with our lunch.
building a world class stadium for a few keen volunteers and campers!
Once everybody was well stretched and fed, we jumped back on the bus for the last leg of the journey.
Day 2: Saturday 16th January
Arriving at the Mt Mittamatite Caravan Park we unloaded, were allocated our sleeping arrangements and headed to our rooms, tents or caravans to unpack. On this camp you become an expert at pitching tents, blowing up mattresses and eating food! Once everyone was sorted out it was time for a swim in the pool, while others were introduced to the game of “Frisbee Wars”, games of which would begin at any time over the coming days. There had once been talk of building a “Frisbee War” Superdome, but apparently working on a farm was hard enough, let alone worry about
Dinner was at the Corryong Bowls Club and naturally everyone got to try their hand at lawn bowls. Some of our juniors were quite skilful – isn’t this supposed to be an older person’s game? Having said that, the question ‘does the big circle on your bowl go on the inside or outside?’ was heard throughout the evening, despite many lessons.
The first morning we wake up in Corryong used to always make the leaders of the older kids groan as they got up the earliest to take their kids to the airport for plane flights over the region. Having said that it was only ever 15 minutes earlier than the remainder of the camp would have to rise. At 7am we would walk back to the Youth Club Hall for breakfast, accompanied by hundreds of flies eager to join us for an early morning feed. Breakfast at the Youth Club Hall is always good; many bowls of cereal, cheese toasties, pancakes, cheese toasties, fruit, cheese toasties and fruit juice and cups of tea and coffee. Some were attempting to break records
in cheese toastie consumption and in recent years the bar was raised to phenomenal levels. After brekkie we jumped on the bus and headed to the Hogg’s farm.
er? How do I make him look silli
On this camp you become an expert at pitching tents, blowing up mattresses and eating food!
One of the most memorable activities used to be the pilgrimage down the Murray River in a series of rafts. Climate change and low water levels put a stop to this fun ride, where the goal was to make it to the tables of award winning cakes and biscuits before the other rafts. It wasn’t quite as simple as that of course because watching a raft quickly get overturned and fill with water was way too amusing. Soaking the ‘dry raft’ “accidentally” was even more amusing and it was never possible to finish the rafting dry! The Hogg’s farm is on a lovely bend of the Murray River that runs right through their property and like last year, we had to set up rows of tents. Gone were those magnificent days where PD (our amazing bus driver) and his mates would set the tents up for us. This activity is always accompanied by the discovery of a couple of hairy huntsman spiders and numerous grasshoppers that are usually unhappy to have been disturbed from the warmth of the fold in the tent (it always makes for a laugh). A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 15
Debate over tent peg positions and tent pole strategies ensue and it never ceases to amaze me how square tents, side-by-side, never seem to go in a straight line! There is always a need to re-align the tent community at about the half way mark. The rest of the day was filled with motorbike riding, horse riding, swimming and tubing in the river as well as archery, more Frisbee Wars, volleyball and when the water becomes too cold, stone skimming. The art of finding the perfect skimming stone is vital here! One question that does get asked a lot is “where are the toilets?” and when we point at the two lone metal domes on wheels the look of incredulity (and disgust!!) is priceless! With 42 degree heat that we sometimes face, who can blame them for looking startled?!! Among all the activities, there is one constant and that is food, food and more glorious food. It must also be said that this is where the ICM (ice cold milk) makes its first appearance and a silence creeps over camp as contented campers down cartons of the finest milk known to mankind! 16 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
An early night is usually the only option on the farm because as soon as it gets dark you can’t see! Several hours earlier, a small band of hard-core volunteers had recruited other volunteers to sleep under the stars. Will it be too cold, will we get rained on, will we be eaten by bugs are some questions that the softer volunteers asked. The end result however, is that sleeping under the stars is always amazing, lots of fun and worth waking up soaked in dew!
Day 3: Sunday 17th January Waking up to a glorious sunrise, a stream of 4WD’s started rolling in for our first activity of the day. We were to take a 4WD convoy from our campsite over nearby hills – which form part of the Kosciuszko National Park – and down the other side to the Khancoban Dam. Two little things that the experienced leaders would look out for here; never go in the last bunch of 4WDs to leave camp just in case someone in front of you breaks down, and don’t go in a vehicle that has a working CB unit because they get a serious workout with very loud talking and quite often, singing –
what is it about a microphone where nobody can see you?! The Khancoban Dam is more like a lake and we spent the entire day water skiing, biscuiting, knee boarding and generally mucking around in the water. The day in Khancoban is always a highlight and going too hard on the biscuits can often end in a winding, a few bumps and bruises, removal of articles of clothing and even a CEO’s expensive watch! Generally though there was plenty of laughter and battles amongst biscuit goers to push each other off or flip the biscuit over the wake. Once again, the lunch spread was plentiful and piling our plates with Coral’s famous zucchini slice and a bounty of cold meats was a must. A day at the Dam left us all exhausted, and things were pretty quiet as we headed back to the Caravan Park. A shower or relaxing dip in the pool hit the spot and energy was restored. A big night of pizzas for dinner is always popular and most people were off early to bed – Monday was set to be another big day.
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
Hooray!! for Corryong Camp
Day 4: Monday 18th January
Day 5: Tuesday 19th January
Breakfast at the Youth Club Hall and the toastie record breaking attempt was well underway. The Devondale cheese supply was taking a massive hit in Corryong this year, something the town may never recover from! The group was then split into those who were going abseiling and those who went back to the Hogg’s farm. The abseiling was fantastic. It is a very moving moment seeing some of the kids face different fears as they go over the cliff face for the first time. Sometimes just climbing the mountain is hard enough but to do the jump as well, fantastic. Well done to everyone and, of course, our fabulous instructors who set up that safe environment and amazing experience every year.
The last breakfast ever at Corryong – say it ain’t so! The good news was that the toastie eating record was smashed! After breakfast we headed for the final activity of the weekend, water polo at the Khancoban Pool. Players were unfairly selected, and of course, there was one team far stronger than the others, as always – rigged already! The competitive spirit was overflowing and everyone who participated had a great time, if they hadn’t been dunked by one member of the Hogg family! Lovely family but boy were they dirty players in water polo!
After abseiling, the group headed back to the Hogg’s farm to meet up with the others and spend the rest of the day doing activities such as canoeing, archery, Frisbee Wars and swimming. Lunch was provided by the local Country Women’s Association – yum and yummer are the only words to describe the assorted sandwiches and array of cakes and slices. After a solid day of activities and with full bellies, it was back to the Caravan Park for a nice hot shower and preparation for the traditional spit roast dinner and entertainment.
Don’t look down!
In previous years the evening has been capped off with a disco and in the last few years it was an amazing pool party with the sound system set up near the local pool. Unfortunately this year the temperatures had dropped enough for the pool party to be cancelled. Fittingly for the last camp we went back to the grass roots of Corryong discos and in place of the pool party, we had a disco in the Youth Club Hall. Along with our DJ playing great tunes, some wonderful live music was also provided by a local musician and a couple of the kids even took to the microphone and showed off their musical talents. Dancing ability was varied and some of the leaders stepped up and showed that their true calling should have been as a dancer. Whatever the case, the disco always brings a good laugh, watching crazy dance moves, favourite leader’s songs as they all sang at the top of their voices and, of course, singing the ketchup song with our own messed up lyrics!
Lunch was back at the hall. This was very sad as speeches were made and tears flowed. Anyone who did not have a tear in their eyes just didn’t have the Corryong Camp spirit. Traditional photos out the front of the Hall were taken, and it was onto the buses to begin the journey back to Challenge House. I must admit, that bus ride back feels like it takes forever and it feels the same every year. Most people slept and others talked quietly about the best parts of camp. Some were still holding a faint hope that Corryong might be resurrected in the future, but if it doesn’t, we have all enjoyed one of the best camps ever on the Challenge calendar. There have been so many stories and great memories on this camp and it has all come down to one amazing family. Their warmth, generosity, hard work and sense of fun made this camp what it is and they will forever be held in the hearts of anyone who ever attended Corryong Camp. Thankyou so much to the Hogg family and to everyone who has been involved in this camp over the last nineteen years. Adrian (God Hogg), Jan (Mother Hogg), Jeremy (Jezza), Danni (the little one you didn’t look at unless Ash told you that you could) and Ash (Unit Hogg), thank you for everything you have done and from everyone at Challenge we wish you the best of luck for the future in all your endeavours.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 17
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
Sailing the Young Endeavour By Josh Edwards
a sail around the bay at I was invited by Challenge to have vour. It was my first activity Williamstown on the Young Endea of what it would be like with Challenge so I was a bit unsure fitting in. meeting all of these new people and
There were 5 other Challenge kids invited and none of us had met each other prior to the day, so I wasn’t the only nervous one! I didn’t need to worry though, as I found it really easy to talk to people and had a great time throughout the day.
amazing thing was that at first it seemed chaotic with so many ropes being pulled at the same time, sails going up all over the place, people yelling, chanting or counting but it all worked like clockwork and the boat sailed smoothly around the bay.
Lots of the crew on the boat had just done a trip from Adelaide to Melbourne so I think they enjoyed teaching us what they had learnt over the last week – and boy had they learnt a lot!
Unlike their voyage, we had calm seas and smooth sailing – maybe it was my awesome seamanship that helped!
The Young Endeavour crew worked in teams and when given the signal they all hopped into their positions, grabbed a few of us castaways to help out and following their instructions, we started pulling ropes left, right and centre. The 18 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
We had a tour of the Young Endeavour too and while the cabins were small, they didn’t spend much time in them so it didn’t really matter. They did have a spacious eating area though and I did spot a disco ball in one room so my guess is there might have been a party or two along the way!
Obviously the crew might sometimes get a little bored at sea, so to entertain themselves they sing a merry tune or two. We were treated to a performance during some light refreshments and while many sounded a little crazy they were all fun. There were costumes too, which were as crazy as the songs but everyone got into it and us castaways were singing along in no time with all the actions included! The highlight of the day was being able to steer the Endeavour and we all got to have a crack at that if we wanted to. Thanks Challenge for such a wonderful experience and to Sam who arranged this amazing opportunity for us. Now I just need to start saving up for my own boat to sail away into the sunset!
e c u r B g in r e b m e m Re
tatement. In 1996 Bruce, almost ers und an is one nst Joh ce Bru w To say I was lucky to kno that he needed at deal in his life already, decided gre a hed plis om acc ing hav and 70 years old e to be fortunate than himself and so it cam s les se tho p hel to d nte wa He . a new adventure volunteers. “family”, as one of our dedicated that Bruce signed onto the Challenge Challenge to me that indicated the impact that e kids leng Chal the had had on him. One of would e Bruc h whic ery surg had had recently a little was he first At rgo. unde to have also , upon uncomfortable with the idea but then e young brav this if mine!) that sed reali reflection, he itely defin he then it, first with the deal d with coul ured man In 2005, Bruce was hono award in could. ever Herald Sun Pride of Australia 2006 ’t even in then and els Mod Role of And he was right – the surgery didn the category with the ent in lvem ers slow him down and his invo he was chosen as one of the runn year this that er day Earli d . prou ased a t Challenge only incre Queen’s Baton Relay. Wha the but day birth nded 80th his exte d his for brate cele and Bruce was for his family y he Sadl ital. to hosp there next day he was admitted to Challenge “family”, many of who were his by d unde surro , at after passed away soon cheer him on. Throughout his time le happy. beloved wife, children and grandchildren. Challenge Bruce made so many peop when they l man, who He gave kids a grandfather figure We will never forget this wonderfu for the just at and nd cey” ent. lege a “Bru of dpar d at gran calle a ewh gly we lovin didn’t have Bruce became som ge, chan st record, Bruce reckons climate nosed Challenge – firstly for being our olde Unfortunately Bruce himself was diag creams for about more ing know for ndly dredging and all these fancy new seco r, ntee volu cancer a few years into his time at wallop!! with cods of a ys load a alwa all was are , (he bites else mosquito everything than anybody relayed a story he , time the at and e leng Chal her man on better weather guide than the weat
rience that The wealth of knowledge and expe but so too me Bruce came to us with amazed and warm this of did the sheer loveliness ect to resp st utmo the ed show gentle man. He every and each e mad and met he everyone ing he one of us feel special. There was noth of the all ing mak than seemed to enjoy more a ing shar and ome welc feel new volunteers ! them with “cuppa” Sydney to The fact that he had sailed in the us another gave s time few a race t yach art Hob was – e Bruc little insight into the man that much very and d skille ly outgoing, driven, high a team player.
lady’s man, TV!) and finally for being a bit of a ent was at plim com right the t wha knowing just ng a scarf just the right time (oh yes, and havi been have ld knitted for him that really shou
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 19
By Kaitlyn O’Kane
No gutter balls here
Sports Central AT Trevor Barker Sports Camp The Trevor Barker Sports Camp was non-stop action and included just about every sport you can think of and some that you didn’t even know existed! We arrived at Urban Camp (the place we were going to stay, not the camp itself!) not knowing what was in store for us. First we headed to the State Netball and Hockey Centre to play lacrosse and hockey. Danni Roche, who is a former Hockeyroo, showed us how to dribble and pass the ball safely to each other. Meanwhile the Australian Under-19 girls taught us the basics of lacrosse. Apparently the men have easier sticks to catch with than the girls, probably because we are better than them! It was all fun until the weather changed and it began to rain. We got soaked! After we got ourselves dry we took the bus to Optus Oval. My bus was called the ‘Food Bus’ because we stashed a whole bunch of biscuits in the glove box. We did need our energy!
20 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
The other bus was the ‘Party Bus’ and they would have the music blasting, which attracted some attention from passing cars! When we were at Optus Oval we split into two groups – one group played rugby with one of the Melbourne Storm coaches and the other played AFL. While playing AFL we meet Zac Dawson and Steven Baker who both play for the St. Kilda Football Club and ex-Tiger great Joel Bowden. They gave us some tips on how to improve our football skills and we had a goal kicking competition. The rugby group also learnt the skills and given that I had never played this game before, it was hard to learn how to pass the ball properly. I just wanted to punch it!
Spot the basketball player
He shoots, he scores!
Next up we had a go at Ultimate Frisbee. Our instructor taught us how to throw the frisbee accurately. The frisbees they use are much heavier than normal frisbees so it proved a little more difficult. Especially when attempting the ‘hammer’ which you threw from behind your head in a curving motion. After a long day of sports we had definitely worked up a hearty appetite, so we headed to La Porchetta for some dinner and because we hadn’t fit enough activity into the day we then threw in a game of bowling! Heading back to Urban Camp the last memory I have is of my head hitting the pillow… The next day we headed to Southbank where we were going to do something called ‘Parkour’. I had never heard of it before and it looked interesting. Basically, the instructor showed us how to climb walls and jump long distances. It was all about getting to places
Basketball tips from a mast er
faster. You had to be very fit and have lots of experience – the instructor made it look so simple. If you ever want to be a cat burglar, get into this sport! Next we headed to the Bob Jane Stadium to play some soccer. The South Melbourne Soccer Club boys helped us practice our soccer skills and goal kicking then we had a match of girls against boys. At the start the girls weren’t going so well until some professional soccer players helped us out and then it was amazing how much better we became! Even though we were all stuffed, we still had lots more fun ahead! We stopped at Albert Park and had some well needed lunch and cooled down. It wasn’t long before we got into it again and this time we headed to MSAC for golf and
wheelchair basketball. Most of us had never tried wheelchair basketball before and I really enjoyed it. I have been in a wheelchair many times before and I found it a lot easier than running, although the shooting was a little harder to perform. Hitting the ball on the driving range was fun, although I was a lot better at the putting. Our last activity on camp was basketball with legend Andrew Gaze! He was very tall and he made scoring a point look like a breeze. By the end of it I was shooting better than Gazey – well that’s what I told my friends anyway! My brother and I had a great time on the Trevor Barker Sports Camp and will definitely be attending more Challenge camps, especially if they are like this one – so much fun! Thanks to all the Challenge volunteers for giving up their weekend and helping us to improve our sporting skills. A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 21
Play day When organising a day at a water park, the first thing you need to have is great weather – and that is exactly what the doctor ordered for this year’s Challenge Splash and Play Day! Driving from Melbourne voices in the backseat continually asked “are we there yet?” and finally we could answer “yes we are!” as we pulled into the car park of the Adventure Park. If Challenge hadn’t organised the day, I wouldn’t have known the Adventure Park even existed, let alone how big it was! It has so many attractions that none of our kids could ever get bored. If flying down water slides and being a thrill seeker in Bonito’s Bay isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of non-aqua activities to amuse yourself with. From archery to mini golf there are so many things to try that there almost isn’t enough time in the day! Aside from all the activities, there was of course the famous Challenge BBQ, which required an army of Challenge volunteers to manage, as there were many hungry kids and
parents to feed. Families had been asked to bring either bread or a dessert and so after lunch a table laden with goodies awaited us. Needless to say, the table was pretty bare a couple of minutes after we had been let loose on it!! Days like this are really important for my family as it gives us a chance to do things together and have some fun, especially having spent so much time in hospital. It was great to spend time chatting with other mums and dads about life in general and especially good to watch my kids enjoying the opportunities on offer and laughing together. Thanks to everyone at Challenge, including the wonderful volunteers and the many families who brought something for the BBQ – what a wonderful day it was.
A Weekend Pass They
say that the hardest part about the DUC Club Mathoura weekend is picking up the phone and booking your spot. And that’s exactly right. Not knowing what to expect, I finis hed work early and headed to Challenge Hou se for the beginning of a break that I needed but wasn’t sure I deserved. It was a quick mee t and greet and Challenge Dad Murray (our drive r) revved up the engine and got us on our way. It was a smooth run into NSW with a few pit stops – one to pick up a Bendigo dad and many others for some bladder relie f. The three and a half hour bus trip had many of the dads asking questions about what was in store for us on the weekend, all of which were answered as soon as we got to Math oura and met our host. Richard (our host) and his friends greeted us all and laid down the law. He told us that the number one rule was that there were no rules and the number two rule was that the only
22 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
exception to rule number one was that everyone had to be on the golf cour se at 8am in the morning. And that’s what we all did!
By Bruno Margariti
The afternoon had everyone enjoying something different. From cruising on a tinny down the Murray, floating down the river in a ring, more fishing or even some wate r skiing the day flowed into the night, with another king’s feast to be had.
That night the drinks were flowing and we were treated to a lavish dinner fit for a king. The evening was spent meeting the other hosts, sharing ales and tales. The morning sun More tales and more ales in front of the fire broke and we were awakened to the sights into the wee hours of the morning saw some and sounds of the mighty Murray River. With weary eyes at breakfast, but more fishing and the sun glistening off the water the first of the another cruise down the river had us all back rods went in, with the anticipation that lunch in the swing. Before we knew it, we were back may be caught. With no such luck we headed on the bus headed home from wha t seemed down to the golf course. Whilst none of the like a week away from the hectic lives participants were more than week we all end hackers, have at home. a lot of laughs were to be had, with balls ricocheting off trees, and many goin Thank you to the Challenge DUC Club g into the and our drink. Robert Allenby needn’t worr host Richard for what was “just wha y about t the defending his Open title against the doctor (oncologist) ordered”. The hardest thing participants in this competition! about it all was picking up the phon e…….
We just wanted to say a big thanks to Challenge for the awesome day at Geelong Adventure Park. Our family had a great day whilst lots of others were making the day perfect for us – thanks to everyone who worked non stop cooking the B-B-Q and serving the yummy lunch! We can’t speak highly enough of everything you do. Lots of love and thanks from all of us – Mark, Alison, Ted & Eliza
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 23
Ch al le nge Summer Fun
it f e n e b o t s Band e Parker By Mel Haigh, Meg Andrews and Grac
efit concert for Challenge We first decided to organise a ben (and sister) Jacynta was in mid 2009 after our close friend ma in 2007. diagnosed with Hodgkinâ€™s Lympho fantastic and the great cause. The turnout was ing atmosphere buzz the and cy ema supr for g crazy all g goin after seein supporters were dancing and We wanted to give something back t we had hoped for. A raffle wha eded exce far had e leng . through the afternoon all the support and good times Chal by and door prizes generously donated ly, but s without the fund given not only Jacynta and her fami extra The event couldnâ€™t have happened Quicksilver helped to raise some Challenge. or our dog) many other families involved with also (Kell were Kelly s Mr band help of our principal, and the Challenge wrist end rce the G-Fo by a ns, in left e datio was plac Foun band took h e sponsors; Yout popular. Not a wrist Bands to Benefit Challeng ks also to uary and of the gig, as we auctioned off the very last Recruitment and Quicksilver. Than local hall in Portarlington in early Febr family, ds, frien amazing our wonderful sound guys, one for $70! we were lucky enough to have six and of s snap y st, happ Gho e vs. Micka for taking som the bands: A Sleepless Melody, Girl 100 people attended, coming from e, who Over leng Chal Boy at A yone ate, ever rtun and Unfo course Sam Dreams Of Leaving, First nd local community and from all arou ther. their toge t te even dona , the One pull it us Adm ed Called Britney and y the event and help support help battled it out Melbourne to enjo time and play for free. The bands
The perfect By Pauline Vernon
Eastwood Golf Club recently hosted a charity golf day in honour of the late Brodie Daniels. The day was generously supported by major sponsor Porter Davis Homes and raised over $31,000 for Challenge. 24 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Challenge Letter from Jacynta,
16 year old girl who is My name is Jacynta Haigh and I am a diagnosed with Hodgkin’s currently in remission from cancer. I was From the day I was diagnosed I Lymphoma stage four, in August 2007. friends and people who I was surrounded with support from family, never realised I had there to begin with. are surrounded by more love When you’re diagnosed with cancer, you of emptiness where you feel than you knew there was, but still this spot t Challenge does, is fill that completely alone in your battle lingers. Wha providing support and the spot for every child living with cancer, by chance to form new friendships. families deal with the Every day, Challenge helps kids and their s. What makes Challenge unkindness of cancer, in many different way each individual kid, and special is they take the time to get to know for that kid. through this offer the best support available ght of this fundraising concert My younger sister and her friends first thou how well Challenge helped after witnessing how badly I struggled and back on my feet. them, and me, when I was trying to get would have taken me to get Without Challenge, I wonder how long it with confidence. How would out of the wheelchair or to even get outside given the opportunity to meet I have gotten through this without being e thing? The primary idea other kids on camps going through the sam s for another girl or boy to behind this concert was to raise enough fund help, that could become have their ‘miracle’ camp, and with your a handful of kids. finding a cure for cancer, but Challenge may not be saving lives through kids get through the cancer, I strongly believe they save lives by helping y as me and get through the and for those children who are not as luck rest of their life is a happy one. treatment, Challenge makes sure that the
way to spend a Monday! The day began on a very promising note with the course in top shape, the fairways immaculate and the greens firm and fast. The sun was shining and everyone was excited to be out on the course. The day was very well organised and participants commented on how smoothly the event ran and how much fun they had, from start to finish. The atmosphere was buzzing with music on the practice putting green, drink carts scooting around offering thirst quenchers of all kinds and golfers heard saying “You couldn’t ask for a better way to spend a day.” Professional golfers Toby Wilcox and Evan Gale kindly
donated their time to help on two holes where they could take your shot for a small donation. Our MC for the night, John Deeks, was a highlight. He donated his time for the evening and had everyone chuckling and enjoying themselves. It was his energy and enthusiasm that had guests reaching into their pockets to help out – and enjoying it! The generosity of everyone involved in the day is truly inspiring. Everyone supported the cause enthusiastically and as a result of having such a great day, everyone was digging deeper than ever to give to Challenge.
The spirit of giving was at such a high that the auction saw people generously donating even more auction items throughout the evening! This is the third event that the members of Eastwood have held for Challenge, bringing the total amount raised to over $100,000. The members at Eastwood are grateful to have the opportunity to help Challenge through such a great event. The organisers recognise that so many people want to help, yet sometimes they just need the opportunity presented to them in a fun and effortless way. Holding this golf day offers the perfect opportunity! A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 25
Will someone PLEASE let me down!
After leaving Challenge House the three mini buses and the Challenge van took what seemed the longest possible way throu gh the city, to arrive at the National Water Sports Centre. There we were greeted by the Carrum Ski Club and the Navy. We spent mos t of the day biscuiting, knee boarding, wake boarding, skiing and just hanging out. The sun was out so it was a beautiful day to spend so much time in the water. All day we were allowed to eat whatever foods we wanted from the Challenge snack box (well within reas on!). Most of the food was gone by the end of the day, as spending lots of time in the water makes you very hungry! For lunch we had hot pies and saus age rolls from Challenge sponsors Four â€˜N Twen ty and for afternoon tea we managed to knoc k off a few Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Late r on that day we all said a huge thanks to the Carrum Ski Club and the Navy for making our first day
Awesome 26 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
My first camp with Challenge was the Waterskills Camp. Now that I have finished my first camp it has definitely encouraged me to go on more, to have lots of fun and to meet new people. on camp such a fantastic experienc e. We then headed off to Camp Manyung to set up for the night. For dinner at Camp Manyung they made us a delicious lasagne and for dessert we had ice cream and fruit salad. That night we could either watch a movie or enjoy play ing some different games to get to know each other. Teens being teens we stayed up as late as we could even though we were exhauste d! The next morning we got up sort of early to the smell of eggs and bacon for breakfas t. After letting brekkie settle in, we all met outside at the giant swing to have a go on it. Lucky breakfast had settled because a 20m high swing could certainly be messy if you know what I mean! Early in the afternoon we all hopped into the buses and headed down to the Sand ringham Yacht Club for a cruise around the Bay. It isn’t
a hard life at all sitting down, sailin g the bay all afternoon and some of the kids got to swim from the back of their boats, while others sat back and enjoyed the generous cate ring and hospitality. We did wonder what the poor people might be doing…! Unbelievably it was time for dinner already and off we headed to La Porchetta , closely followed by a movie at Southland. After the long, action packed day everyone was glad to get back to camp for a good night’s sleep. It was another early rise for our last day at camp, and we headed off for surfi ng lessons. A windy drive down to Gunnamatta and we arrived to some great waves to surf on. Some of us were great surfers and some of us were… well ….not such great surfe rs! But we all had a go – and that’s the main thing. Two hours of surfing, a quick dry off then on to the buses to drive down to Sorrento whe re we enjoyed a homemade lunch sent from camp,
which included the most delicious muffins. After enjoying our yummy lunch, we headed out on the pier to the Moonraker Char ters boat to get into wetsuits again and go out swimming with the dolphins and seals. The whole weekend was so much fun and especially all the fantastic weather that we had, but this last activity of swimming with the dolphins was the highlight of the cam p for me, and it was quite amazing to see them out in the wild. Luckily there happened to be lots of dolphins out on the day we were there , so everyone got to see them. My other favourite thing was having so much yummy food and homemade snac ks made by the camp chefs! On behalf of all the kids who went to the Waterskills Camp 2010, I would like to thank all the Challenge crew and anyone else who made this weekend possible. THA NK YOU!
t e rs k i l l s C a mp
By Sarah Blakemore
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 27
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
Georgia Meets Hi-5
By Kaaren Siddall
Challenge very kindly organised for Georgia to see Hi-5 perform at the Arts Centre. It was a great opportunity for our family to have a special day out; her sister Taylor was able to come long too. They both love watching and dancing to the Hi-5 crew.
As we all know making plans when your child is receiving treatment is next to impossible to do, so it was lucky we went to the Melbourne concert as when Hi-5 were in Geelong, Georgia had a temperature and was in hospital. The Hi-5 concert was all about having a party. They threw beach balls into the crowd and organised a surprise party for Chats. Everybody had to keep the party a surprise. After the Hi-5 party Georgia & Taylor were asked if they would like to go and meet Hi-5
THANKS NUFARM... FOR ALLOWING US to Get We were lucky enough to be invited by Challenge to witness all the action at the 2010 Grand Prix in Melbourne. We were all set to meet up at gate two and by 10am we couldn’t wait for the action to start. We were escorted to a viewing platform right next to the track and couldn’t believe how good our view was.
Best seat in the house!
28 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
The viewing platform was sponsored by Nufarm and they had put aside seats just for us. Out of all of the cars we saw, Ben’s favourite racing car was the red Ferrari. During the day, Mark Winterbottom dropped in
for a visit whilst we were at the pit stop checking out all the cool cars. Ben was lucky enough to then be offered a ride in a helicopter high above the Grand Prix grounds and got to see the Minis racing from a bird’s eye view. Ben said “It was really fun and extremely exciting and I was so glad that I could go!” All three of us had a FANTASTIC time and we thank Challenge for the opportunity to be part of this amazing day.
Keeping Cancer at Bay By Robyn Coombs and Gill Stubbs
Challenge and the Sandringham Yacht Club (SYC) members joined forces for the Keeping Cancer at Bay fundraising event in March. The day kicked off with the roar of five motor boats as thirty Challenge kids on board got to experience life on the waters of Port Phillip Bay. The weather was stunning and out on the water everyone got to watch part of the range race with prime views aboard the yachts. The tranquillity was short lived as a water balloon fight broke out and the excitement levels continued to increase with energetic dancing on the bow to pumping music – everyone had a ball. backstage. Both girls said yes of course – they were very excited to meet them. We got to meet up with Tim, Fely, Casey and Lauren. Stevie was not able to make it to meet the girls (we told Georgia he was too busy eating cake from the party!!). They signed Georgia’s ticket and asked her to go backstage when they came to her hometown of Geelong on their next tour. To this day, Georgia still talks about meeting Hi-5 and tells everyone that Stevie was busy eating cake after the Hi-5 party!! Thank you to Challenge and Hi-5, for making Georgia’s day.
Back at the club, Challenge volunteers got busy selling raffle tickets and wrist bands with some great prizes on offer. All enjoyed a lovely late afternoon and evening of stunning weather on the Northern Podium with a delicious SYC BBQ offered along with a free drink. With appetites sated it was time to kick the party into gear and some great live entertainment from Velvet Corporation got the party started. Dancing was definitely in order and continued on well into the night. Even patrons at the neighbouring Harbour
Loud at the Grand Prix
View Restaurant were spied dancing at their outdoor tables. Thanks to SYC members who bought wristbands to support Challenge. The event was well promoted with the dedicated SYC Social committee selling raffle tickets prior to the event as well as organising sausage sizzles – what a great job they did! Naomi Smith organised wrist bands to sell. Margaret Whitbread helped to look after the Challenge members on the boats and highest online fundraisers won flags thanks to John Chatham. Special thanks to John Orr-Campbell who postponed his flight to Sydney just so he could help us out when he heard there was a shortage of boats. To all the boat owners involved on the day Bill and Gill Stubbs, Mike and Di Stahmer, Bruce and Sue Eddington, Paul and Sheryl Gray and John and Michelle Orr-Campbell and all the people who gave up their time to help out at this great fundraising event, we cannot thank you enough.
By Emma and Ben Pritchard
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 29
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
Hurr ay My brother Julian and I were looking forward to Hamilton Camp and were counting down the days from the time we got the Challenge flier right up to when we hopped on to the bus and said goodbye to mum!
30 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
By Nicola Pegoraro
We left Challenge with 30 other excited kids to go on Hamilton Camp. After a few hours on the bus we arrived in Hamilton and had a filling dinner at the Hamilton Lions Clubrooms. After we had covered all the tables with our artwork we went straight to Hamilton College where we would ‘sleep’ each night. When we got there we took all our stuff out of the trailer, found our beds and watched a movie called, “Mall Cop”. We wanted to talk all night, but the leaders made sure that wasn’t going to happen so off to bed we went. I was too excited to go to sleep thinking about the fun things we would get to do the next day!
After a delicious breakfast we started our journey out to Macarthur. On the way we stopped off at a place where a volcano had erupted a long time ago. Despite the cold and rain when we made it into Macarthur, we had fire engine and horse carriage rides. When I was on the top of the carriage I was a bit scared… it was high! At the Macarthur halls we enjoyed a huge morning tea and played some games, the best one was musical chairs. After lunch we said goodbye and headed to the Hamilton Aquatic and Indoor Centre and had a swim. Lucky for us the pool was heated! After a couple of hours of swimming and taking underwater photos we went to see ”Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang” at the cinemas. When the movie was finished we went to the lawn bowls club but because it was raining they organised activities inside. We did some indoor bowls and also played table tennis and my team won. Yes! We had dinner and played ‘Pass the Parcel’. My brother almost won!
Many thanks to the Hamilton Lions Club for their ongoing support in preparing dinner and breakfasts for the kids on camp. It is always a great start to camp and everyone loves drawing a masterpiece or playing hangman (the leaders included!) A big thank you too, to Hamilton College. The boarding house is always immaculate and a great place for the kids to rest their heads every night.
Every year Bill and the members of the Macarthur Lions Club help Challenge have a great day. Thanks to all those pikelet makers and soup brewers, as well as Ranger Geoff with his car rides, Andrew who brings his Cobb and Co coach along and to Hugh for bringing the Fire Truck. This year the Hamilton Apex Club took it to another level with the activities! Thanks for the wonderful dinner, bowling and other activities you arranged for our kids.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 31
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
for Hamilton Camp!
Saturday When I woke up Saturday morning my brother had disappeared! I later found out he went Go Karting and even though he spun out a few times, he loved it! I went out to Lake Hamilton for some speed boat rides. The speed boat went that fast it nearly tipped and I got a bit wet from splashes of water (which was all part of the excitement)! While we were at the lake we also had some Hot Rod rides. The man driving the black one went really fast! Both groups then met up and we went to Ron and Jean’s farm in Cavendish. Sheep shearing, riding the old bike and watching the dogs round up the sheep when Ron just whistles was very cool. The chocolate mousse was yummy too! Don’t get me started on the magician and his tricks; I still don’t get what he did with those cards! From the farm we went to Hamilton Airport and had aeroplane rides. There were two steering wheels at the front and I got to steer one. I felt very lucky. We were then taught some boot scooting and other dance moves, which was lots of fun. The pilots then cooked us a BBQ dinner at the airport and an ice-cream for dessert filled me right up. Back at the College we watched the movie ‘Up’ before heading to bed – what a day! Dave and his crew at the Hamilton Go Kart Club wish every year that the rain stays away – and every year their prayers aren’t answered! Thanks so much for lending us your track, time and, of course, karts to give the kids a chance to hot lap it around the track, which is always a blast. Thanks also Dave and his friends and family for bringing their speed boats along yet again for those thrill rides, and to the Hamilton District Drag Racing Club for their time and range of machinery the kids get to go super fast in! Ron and Jean, thank you for allowing us to come to the farm and enjoy what you have to offer. The kids always love to come out and experience something that is not offered at home in the city. No, the pilots didn’t prepare all the food! Thanks to everyone at the North Hamilton and Hamilton Rotary Clubs for preparing our lovely dinner again and the Hamilton Aero Club for flying our kids… safely… around Hamilton! Thank you Hamilton Bootscooters Club for dancing up a storm and teaching us a few fun dance steps on the way. 32 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Horse & cart... the only way to roll at Hamilton Camp!
Hi down there!
Sunday The last day of camp always means packing to leave, which isn’t fun, but after breakfast we went for an awesome motorbike ride through the Grampians to Halls Gap. When we turned corners it felt like the bike was going to tip. My biker bought me an ice cream and some Hubba Bubbas. He was really nice. After lunch we left to come home. I wished that camp could have gone on for longer. I had the best weekend ever!!!! I made new friends and their names were Kim, Eliza, Isabella, Alessia, Olivia, Akari and Keely. Thank you Challenge for an awesome camp!!!!
The final day is a highlight for all the kids, many of whom have never been on a motorbike before. Thanks to the Hamilton District Motorcyclists for taking the kids on an exhilarating ride. Thanks also to the Dunkeld Lions Club for making sure that no stomach leaves camp empty! Every year our mate Gavan works tirelessly to make sure camp runs smoothly and the kids have heaps to do. This year was no exception, so thanks Gav (and your family) for everything that you do for Challenge and our kids and for making 2010 another wonderful Hamilton Camp experience.
Ladies who lunch With the success of the Challenge Diamonds Club, launched in 2008, we were very excited about our very first Diamonds Club Lunch. So on a glorious Saturday, 140 women arrived at The Marine Hotel in Brighton for a very special event to further support the Women for Challenge program.
Lisa Barron design
Xenia inspires! The talented Janine Maunder
nder While talented vocalist Janine Mau , ladies crooned out some beautiful melodies nks (Tha kling sipped some Tyrrells spar courtesy of Pratika!) and had their nails done phy was Mur ces Fran ity onal pers ia M3. Med kicked and our very capable MC for the day . style off the proceedings in two course Ladies were seated for a delicious was there as d inue meal. The chatter cont fell to a bels deci the but on up h much to catc a Xeni ber hushed silence as Challenge mem es rienc expe onal inspired us all with her pers g of Challenge. What an incredible youn woman! s were Following Xenia’s moving talk, ladie from ction colle inter mn/w autu the treated to e. the stunning Lisa Barron design hous s Models meandered through the table and ring tailo le ccab impe showcasing the
on the guests were even given a rundown s. selve them gns desi the inspiration for s up for There was an array of wonderful item g like sellin were ts ticke and grabs in the raffle tion tradi d gran the in se, cour of hotcakes. And Gala d Frien Best Girl’s a are onds of the Diam ond raffle. Dinner we couldn’t forget the Diam away ed walk Congratulations to Laura who is tenn ond diam with a sparkling gold and rters – Impo ond Diam e ourn bracelet from Melb ly! bubb of glass a ng hasi all for purc came Thanks to the wonderful ladies who event. e leng Chal new this along to support funds nt ifica sign d raise we ts, effor With your on the day. and of A special thanks to all our sponsors nteers volu d cate dedi and ted talen course our ! othly who made sure the event ran smo
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 33
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
freeze their plums of f for Challenge
It was a cold, wet and wintery mo rning as I rolled out of bed for the first inaugural Peninsula Surfri ders Club (PSC) 70’s Single Fin Challenge. Driving down to Gunna matta on the Peninsula Freeway at 5.30am, I was hoping that no one would be deterred by the average weather forecast and that huey would bring us some fun waves to demonstrate some classi c seventies inspired surfing. By Sam McOrist I arrived at the car park first and I was surprised to see a few small quality waves peeling across the banks at first car park. The waves looked contestable but just to be sure I felt that I needed to jump in for a quick splash to check it out. I was right, great fun little waves but my excitement was short lived as the wind swung and the storm of all storms approached!! Unperturbed, at 8am the boys arrived with the tents, BBQ and judges gear ready for registration. As we set up, car after car started rolling into the car park and in true PSC style no spirits were dampened by the weather and over 80 surfers braved the cold to help out Challenge. What followed was a great day of fun and games both in and out of the water with safari suits, stylish surfing and of course Jimi Hendrix pumping through the P.A. One of the other cool things about the day was the amazing display of seventies surfboards lining the track to the beach. Surfboards from this era have an amazing story to tell and a mysterious appeal that evokes images of panel vans, long hair, road trips and the quest for unridden waves. Throughout the day there were hilarious surfing highlights (and lowlights) on the unconventional equipment and Caiden Fowler, Amy Hackett, Ronnie Gorringe and Liam McCafferty won the open, women’s, over 50s, and over 35 divisions respectively. There were also awards for style, dress and wipe-outs with some solid competition for each. Unfortunately I misunderstood the theme of the day and surfed like I was in my 70’s, but I had a ball and managed to sneak a couple of waves. 34 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
The real winner on the day was Challenge however as the club had organized a webbased fundraising campaign prior to the event. And with major prize incentives and fantastic support provided by event sponsors Trigger Bros Surfboards, Billabong, Rusty, and Insight, Spikas Retro Surfboards and Oke Surfboards combining with such a worthy cause, the total raised topped $10,000. Liam McCafferty and Kerri Pope took home a surf gear pack for their highest fundraising effort and summed up the club’s work perfectly – “everyone should be proud of supporting such a fantastic charity and taking part in a great event. It reminds us of just how lucky we are.” Jane Featherstone, Morgan Winch, Gavin Duffy and Tim Antonie were also
rewarded for their large fundraising and contributions. To celebrate their efforts the club also ran a ripping 70’s party at the club rooms following the event with more stylish moves (this time on the dance floor) and some inspirational dress from the era. PSC President, Lachy McDonald, expressed his happiness with the club’s efforts by saying “We are extremely proud as a club to raise a significant amount for such a worthy cause and aim to go bigger and better for Challenge in years to come.” Plans are already underway for 2011 so if you’ve got an old board under the house and want to enjoy a groovy day at the beach, look out for the event details over summer!
MELTON VALLEY GOLF DAY It is often said that golf is in the blood of the Challenge organisation, and with International Patron Robert Allenby at the helm, and Jarrod Lyle one of our Ambassadors, I can certainly see why! Golf Days are therefore something we welcome at Challenge and when generous people come to us and propose holding a Golf Day to raise vital funds for our organisation, we are always extremely grateful for the opportunity. Through the support of Geoff Ross, the Melton Valley Golf Club professional, the golf day held for Challenge by the club was a great success.
There were many different activities held around the golf course and participants had a brilliant day. After a round of golf, lunch and a raffle, it was announced that over $10,000 had been raised for Challenge – a tremendous effort by all involved.
To all of the day’s sponsors, volunteers and professional golfers, and those who attended on the day and helped to support Challenge, thank you. I hope we’ll be able to catch up again in 2011 at the Melton Valley Golf Course!
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 35
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
About Willy… (B oat
On a lovely Saturday in March, a big group of Challenge kids and parents came together at the Royal Victorian Motor Yacht Club before setting sail on board “Mick’s Boat” for our annual cruise around the bay at the Williamstown Boat Day. Mick Trezise and his team from Williamstown Charters had once again kindly invited Challenge to “come aboard” and as the crew hauled in the anchors and we headed out to sea, the salty air filled our nostrils and we were blissfully enjoying a relaxing day on the water… Little did we, the unsuspecting passengers, know what lay in store for us; treats, treasure and tyranny. Halfway into the ‘quiet’ trip around the bay, a motley crew of pirates
36 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
unexpectedly set upon Mick’s boat. Luckily, the kids quickly armed themselves with water bombs that just happened to be on board and as it quickly became clear that the pirates were equally well armed, the battle began… Both parents and children joined forces and gave those nasty looking pirates a run for their money. Balloon after balloon was hurled; many missed their target, while others scored a direct hit. Some crusaders ended the clash a little messier than others, but finally the pirates
conceded defeat and handed over the treasure - a delicious lunch of fish & chips from the nearby “Town Fryer”. Meanwhile back at the club, the parents who had been left behind were peacefully devouring a delicious BBQ lunch cooked by our friends at the Point Gelibrand Rotary Club, but the peace was soon interrupted by the boatload of triumphant kids, who had docked just in time to enjoy the activities on shore.
Day that is !) Rachel and Dave played beautiful music in the background while Crazy Pete entertained children and adults alike with his wonderful magic. The jumping castle was very well used (!) and Toula and Melissa were kept very busy creating a masterpiece on each child’s face. The day was a wonderful success and was thoroughly enjoyed by all the kids and parents who attended. It was a great opportunity to have some fun and catch up with friends met in hospital as well as meet many new faces. Challenge would like to sincerely thank everyone involved in making this day possible. A great day was had and we are already looking forward to next year, when once again, we’ll get those pesky pirates!
T hank you! ! y a b e h t n o y a Ad By Vanessa Wearne
Williamstown Yacht Club came On a beautiful, sunny Saturday the ed to a fantastic day. alive as Challenge families were treat a big boat to explore the bay. All the kids were whisked away on s and finished off with fish and They had plenty of ice cream, lollie on fight against real live ballo r chips. Everyone loved the wate . seas high the pirates they met out on a jumping castle, face painting, Once back on dry land, there was h gave them all a great laugh. and a balloon shaping clown whic
y time relaxing with a Of course the parents also had a lovel ing to a great band. beautiful lunch and drinks while listen We all felt so spoilt. Charters, Williamstown Thank you very much to Williamstown lenge who made this Chal at yone Yacht Club and of course ever such a memorable family day out. Thank you, Vanessa Wearne
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 37
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
2006 38 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
of Logies Walking the red carpet at the Logie Awards is possibly one of the most daunting experiences, while at the same time being one of the most exhilarating. For ten years Challenge Chairman Tom Gleisner has made this very special and unique opportunity possible for one Challenge member. Over that period Tom has been involved in writing, producing and starring in television shows such as “A River Somewhere”, “The Panel” and “Thank God You’re Here” and he and the Working Dog team have taken home a few Logies of their own in that time. We thank Tom sincerely for making this opportunity possible and helping to make the night one to remember. This special ‘date’ would not be possible without the wonderful make up artists and stylists who also help us each year, and have made each of Tom’s guests feel like a superstar!
Each year on Logies night, my wife (Mary) very kindly has allowed me to invite a young Challenge member in her place, so they are able to meet their favourite celebrities and experience something they would never normally be able to. The Logies experience is not only attending, but being fitted and provided with a dress, shoes, handbag, wig (if needed), as well as feeling like one of the stars by having their makeup done by experts, alongside some of their favourite stars and ultimately walking the red carpet. In some ways I feel that I am the lucky one to share this experience. Challenge Chairman Tom Gleisner
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 39
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
The Best Night
By Kaitlyn O’Kane
I had the best night ever at the 2010 Lo gies. It was amazing and I still have butterflies in my stomach just thinking about it all. Tom Gleisner and Challenge are legends and I am foreve r grateful. My night at the Logies with Tom Gleisner was awesome. When David first told me that I was going to be walking down the red carpet I was shocked and excited. My mum even started crying she was so overwhelmed. I spent a lot of time looking at dresses and telling all my friends – they were very jealous. When I arrived at Crown I was greeted by Tom and we made our way to the red carpet. I heard a lot of screaming voices and from then on I was in another world. There were cameras and flashes going off all around and everywhere I looked I saw someone famous. I was a little nervous at first and was a bit tired from the walk but I was pumped with adrenalin. As soon as we were inside I spotted Hamish Blake and was very eager to meet him. I was very fortunate to get a photo with him. I had a lot of great photos with famous stars including: Josh Thomas, Fifi Box, Jules Lund, Rebecca Gibney, Natalie Bassingthwaite, Glenn Robbins and Hugh Sheridan. My favourites were Andy Lee and Megan Gale and the top four from So You Think You Can Dance Australia. I was so happy to see Robbie who was my favourite from the competition. I also really enjoyed the performances which included Gabriella Cilmi, K.D.Lang and John Mayer. It was fantastic. There were great costumes and lighting and their voices were spectacular. Unfortunately I missed K.D.Lang because I was in the toilet! Being at the Logies was an unforgettable experience. Not once did I think about my illness or my image which for most teenage girls who have lost their hair could understand. For this night I was completely carefree. But when people would ask me if going to the Logies made up for illness, I would tell them that nothing could, but it made me feel wanted and made me realise that there are some really caring people in this world. Thank you so much. 40 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Dear Challenge, The Logies night out organised by Challenge was one of the best weeks of our lives, especially when at the start of the week Kaitlyn’s oncologist said her scans and lumber puncture were all clear. As a parent I could not ask for more right now. To think this time last year I was dressing surgical wounds and giving meds and now we are back on track doing girly things just like we should be!! Kaitlyn is still on a real high, so you can say that this has been the best medicine ever! Forever Grateful, Lisa
Getting a Rush on set Best in show at Urban Camp Tickle me Elmo
Making a splash on Waterskills Camp
Watch Out driver coming through
Close encounter at the Zoo
Incognito Hijinx at Hamilton Choc central at Easter
101,102, 103 ....
Hide & Seek Playgroup style A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 41
How about that Brownlow Juddy?
A meet and greet with Zeke
Cheers to Challenge Ball
Little mermaids Is that you Michealangelo?
Magical moment at Junior Camp
How would Jarrod Lyle hit this?
Being cheeky at Playgroup Hanging out at Windy Hill 42 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Yeah! for Trevor Barker House
Look Mum no hands
Ready to Rumble at Motorbike Camp
Hitting the Show at Urban Camp
Junior Camp Royalty
Cooper visits the ward
Hitting the waves at Barwon Ski Day
Smash em Up!
Hallowed ground at the G
The Challenge team 2010 We love Easter at Challenge
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 43
Does it get any better? Going wild for Urban Camp
Getting crafty at Junior Camp
Wet & wild at Splash & Play day
Hands up for our volunteers Jewels of the sea
Junior Camp smiles!
Challenge volunteers â€“ In Demand!
Wild about Willy
The making of a masterpiece Who's number one? Thumbs Up for Waterskills Camp 44 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Ch al le nge Autumn Madness
DUC Day Out
By Graeme Barr
Complete with Corporate Hospitality! s met at oon when a group of Challenge dad ern aft y nda Su t we and d col a s It wa e play St Kilda in the final home and urn lbo Me rth No tch wa to m diu Etihad Sta and comfort of a corporate suite. th rm wa the m fro r yea L AF the away match of The dads met outside Gate 2 for this DUC (Dad’s Ultimate Challenge) Club event, and although the rain had stopped as the dads started to arrive some were dry and some very wet! The group comprised of a variety of dads – some who barracked for the Saints, some for the ‘Roos and others who supported a variety of clubs, including the Magpies and the Demons. All were there for the same reason though – to meet other Challenge dads in an environment where everybody could relax and enjoy the day, chatting in between eating, drinking and watching the match.
Once everybody had introduced themselves we had some pre game drinks and after the first bounce some dads watched the footy while others talked about family, occasionally having a glance at the game. As it turned out, some dads had come from the hospital, just for a couple of hours’ break, which was very much-needed. As the afternoon progressed the result of the game didn’t seem to matter and it was just good to see some dads have a little bit of “bloke time”.
The corporate suite was fantastic and allowed our group to chat amongst ourselves, rather than be sitting in a long row of seats in the stadium which makes meeting each other difficult. The wonderful food and drink didn’t hurt either! Thanks Challenge and Etihad Stadium for providing a wonderful venue to allow dads to support each other. It would be great to see more dads take up the opportunity to be involved in DUC Club activities. For the record the Saints won!!!!
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 45
DIAMONDS The best way to describe the annual Challenge ‘Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend’ Gala Dinner is through the photos taken at the event. This year, with the addition of an Australian Photo Booth in the foyer, the photos really do help to capture the fun of the night. Monies raised at this event have helped Challenge provide valuable services that help our families through the most difficult of times, including home help, petrol and grocery vouchers, weekend retreats and regional brunches, all of which are vital. We would like to acknowledge the many sponsors and supporters who have assisted with this women-only event over the years. The Women for Challenge Committee has worked hard over the past ten years to grow this event from 250 guests to 1450. Each of these women is truly inspirational in their unwavering commitment to Challenge and we cannot thank them enough.
46 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 47
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Big Fun By Mia McDowall
at Junior Camp 1 I was lucky enough to be chosen to go on Junior Camp 1 this year.
On the morning of the camp I felt really excited. We got into the car and drove a little way before I realised that I didnâ€™t have my teddy. So we turned around and went back home to get him and then continued on to Challenge House. There I met my leader, Vicki. We said our goodbyes to our mums and dads and got on the bus and drove to our first stop which was a play centre!!! The Day Dreamers play centre had three giant slides that went from the top floor to the ground. It was AWESOME!!! We had lunch at the play centre, which was our choice of a sandwich, ranging from delicious turkey salad to tuna to nutella. After heaps of non stop playing, we set off for Camp Manyung. There it was raining, so everyone was trying to get under cover. Jaime yelled over the rain where we would be staying for the night. Vicki and I found out that we would be sleeping with Gabriela and her leader Ali. I was happy because I knew Gabriela from other camps. We went to our cabin and unpacked our stuff, then went to our activities. First up we had free time, and it was too wet for any of the usual activities like the flying fox or petting zoo, which was disappointing, but we read a book then we played some board games. 48 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Fairy Twinkletoes performed some silly magic and had everyone laughing and smiling, especially when her pet dog Rufus tried to do some magic too ! Next we moved on to cooking. We made chocolate crackles, playdough and some yummy cupcakes with different coloured icing. I can never understand why there is always so much of the food we cook leftover – I wonder why the leaders don’t eat it? Then we moved on to circus skills where a man taught us how to hula hoop and some other awesome stuff. We finally moved to art and craft where we stuffed teddies and put faces and clothes on them and named them – we even got a birth certificate for our teddy! I hope my teddy from home didn’t get jealous… After dinner everyone got showered and into their pyjamas, ready for our special visitor, who I’m led to believe entertained the
President of America’s kids!! Wow, Challenge goes all out to entertain us at camp… Fairy Twinkletoes performed some silly magic and had everyone laughing and smiling, especially when her pet dog Rufus tried to do some magic too! After breakfast the next morning, Alyssa took us for activities and we played lots of cool games in groups. Then we were given some dress-up costumes and I got a Superman costume – it was awesome! There were princesses, Ben 10s, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Cinderellas! Soon police cars and fire trucks came and gave us all rides. We also got to jump on a
huge jumping castle. Kids were bumping into each other but it was fun! We also got to have our faces painted and then Crazy Pete came and did some real magic. He even pulled coins out from people’s hair! Some of the parents came to have lunch with their kids and watched Crazy Pete too. I went home on the bus with Gabriela and her brother, Rafael. I have been on 6 Challenge camps and enjoyed every one of them. I would like to thank all the Challenge staff and volunteers who make the camps so much fun. I really appreciate having the opportunity to go on the camps. Thanks a million for all of them!! A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 49
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Up all night! By Sarah Lawton
It’s always a wonderful time of the year when Challenge hosts their Slumber Party at the fabulous Hilton Hotel Grand Ballroom. This special night was never going to be a letdown, as nothing else but a fantastic and fun-filled night was expected.
“T here was face painting, fake tattoos and everyone’s favourite – The Games Room!”
As the endless line of children and parents waited with sleeping bags, mattresses and even a few air beds there was excitement in the air. There was even more excitement when we finally got inside! There was face painting, fake tattoos and everyone’s favourite – The Games Room! Featuring gaming consoles, a jumping castle and arcade games such as Daytona and motorbike racing, the Games Room kept us happy with all that and not one, but two dance machines. There were even the good ol’ fashioned pinball machines and pool tables. There was only so much one could play with before dinner was served by the generous Hilton staff. There was quite a range to choose from – hot chips, little sausages, fish, party pies and more! Mmm – it was tasty! Once everyone had eaten to their little heart’s content, it was back to playing again! Under the watchful eyes of the many caring Challenge volunteers, some semblance of order was kept while lining up for a jump and climb on the jumping castle, or a turn of the Nintendo Wii.
I challenge you to a duel
Before we knew it, it was time for the first movie! And we were all excited because first up was Shrek 4! With some pushing and shoving, and a bag of popcorn for every person, we were all soon comfortably seated in bean bags and ready for the lights to dim and the movie to light up the big screen. Around an hour and a half later everyone was up and about – no rest for the wicked as they say! With the littler members sent off to bed at the respectable hour of midnight, the older kids partied till dawn or until their eyes closed for a much needed rest – sometimes mid sentence. Movies continued to play all night and the Games Room was always packed with kids. Challenge didn’t disappoint this year ... once again. I am glad to have met the great people I did and to get the chance to share an awesome night with them. Thanks to Jaime and the Challenge volunteers for running around all night/day to make sure we had the very best time possible! Also thanks to the Hilton staff for letting us party in the Grand Ballroom once again.
Peace Out! 50 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
I’ll never be too old for this kind of fun!
Toy Story 3 “To infinity and beyond” was a term I think Buzz Lightyear would have used to describe the line at the Challenge Movie Day!
The Final Chapter
500 excited kids and parents (big kids!) woke up early on a crisp Sunday morning to venture down to our favourite Greater Unio n Cinema on Russell Street. Going to the movies just isn’t the sam e unless you have a bucket of popcorn in one hand and a drink in the other, so Christina and her gang made sure every kid had exac tly that. As the big screen came to life, we watched one-eyed Bart tackle our hero Woo dy and from
there, the action didn’t stop, with all the regulars appearing, plus some new toys to bring even more fun. The reviewers on the day suggested Toy Story 1 was excellent , number 2 was also excellent and apparently Toy Story 3 was the excellentest! A huge thank you to Christina Ban tos and all her staff at Greater Union for their continued support – it’s great to know that we’v e always “got a friend” in you!
GOING CASUAL FOR A CAUSE AT AUSTOCK Once a month, the staff at Austock, run a wear Casual for a Cause day. Each staff member who wears casual clothin g donates a gold coin donation and Austock chip in from a dedicated charity fund to inc rease the staff’s contribution. In June we were lucky enough to be the charity of choice and we are very grateful to the staff at Aust ock for choosing us. Austock have been running their Casual for a Cause days since 2009 when more than 80% of staff agreed this was a great thing for them to be involved in.
Want to do more in your workplace? Workplace Giving is where employee s donate to charity through a regular payroll deduction. Similar to salary sacrifice, donations are made out of pre tax dollars. Workplace Giving is very easy to set up and is a partnership between you, your employer and your chos en charity. Every program brings compelling benefits to each participa nt. From supporting non profits to meeting corporate social responsi bility objectives, Workplace Giving joins communities in firm, posi tive and lasting relationships. If you’d like to know more about work place giving or set up a fund in your workplace to help us in a very real way please give us a call on 03 9329 8474. A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 51
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
b r o t o M
We left Challenge House by bus in the early evening and settled in for the long drive, catching up with other kids on our bus that we’d met on previous camps. It didn’t seem to take that long because we had lots of fun mucking around and talking about the other camps.
We woke up early and got changed into our motorbike gear. We had brought our own gear with us as we do some motorbike riding ourselves. We had a big breakfast of cereal and toast, bacon and eggs before jumping onto the buses and heading towards the Outtrim Motocross Track. When we arrived we met Glen “Maca” MacDonald who would be our coach, along with motocross rider Jarrod Long.
We stopped quickly for a toilet break and then when we finally got to the Big 4 Holiday Park, Inverloch (where we would be staying) we all had pizza for dinner after unloading the bags off the bus. After settling into our rooms we put our bathers on and went for a swim in the indoor pool, which was awesome considering it was a freezing cold night and the pool was so nice and warm. We were in a cabin with some of our friends and Micka. After a great afternoon and night we finally hit the sack and were excited about the riding we were going to do the next day. 52 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
They took us through what the plans were for the day’s riding and the safety procedures. Maca and Jarrod were also joined by a guy called Scott, who was only 15-years old and already Australia’s No.1 rider for 85cc motorbikes. He showed us some of his moves throughout the weekend, and we could see how he got to No.1!! Once we starting riding we rode all day rotating the bikes between each other so that whilst one was riding the
iCkamep 2010 By Daniel and Jordan Di Carluccio
other was resting and getting something to eat and drink. When we finished we were exhausted and covered in mud, as the track had been pretty wet, so we got changed and went back to the caravan park where we ate dinner and then headed out to Leongatha for a movie. We got back pretty late, so it was straight to our cabins to get ready for another big day of riding. We did stay up and talk about the day’s activities and muck around a little but eventually our tiredness got the better of us and we fell asleep.
Day 3 After breakfast the next day, we had to pack all of our gear back onto the buses as we wouldn’t be coming back to the caravan park after the day’s riding. We thanked Kate and her team for having us then set off towards the track again. We started straight away and got on our bikes and rode for most of the day, but unfortunately we had to stop early due to the rain. We got changed and helped clean up the bikes and put even more muddy clothes into garbage bags to take home to our mums! Then we loaded back onto the buses and settled in again for the long drive home. We talked and laughed all the way home about all the fun we had while on camp with our friends, and got back really tired but very happy and content. Overall the Challenge Motorbike Camp was an awesome and great experience, spending time with some friends and having heaps of fun!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can’t wait for the next one!!!!! Thanks to all Challenge leaders and carers for everything that you did for us. A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 53
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
The excitement all began for Owen when we received the call from Sam at Challenge inviting Owen to run out onto the MCG with his beloved Collingwood Football team as the Team Mascot. Firstly, he had an amazing time having his photo taken with three great sports stars for the Herald Sun – Melbourne Storm’s Cooper Cronk, Melbourne Heart’s Matt Thompson and Collingwood’s Alan Didak - to launch Challenge’s “Biggest Aussie Pie Night” campaign. You could tell by the smile on his face how much he loved it. And then on Saturday he had the honour of running onto the MCG in front of a huge crowd with the almighty Pies. Lots of players patted him on the back and asked if he was enjoying himself. He smiled back, loving every bit of it. He stood in their huddle as the team gathered and then they all burst through the banner together. We just loved watching Owen run faster than he ever had before, keeping up with the mighty Pies. Before we knew it he was walking back to us with the biggest smile and a souvenir piece of the banner in his hands - he was a very happy boy. Since diagnosis, it’s not often we get to see genuine smiles like that on Owen’s face so it was an absolute thrill. Finally, we finished the day celebrating a fantastic win in the Collingwood rooms. Owen was exhausted, but he and his brother got to catch up with some of their favourite players a precious memory to carry forever. What an amazing experience for the boys… (and Mum as well!). Thank you to the Collingwood Football Club and thank you Challenge.............
By Lee Bowditch
ussigie A Big(MA ag)Pie N ht
54 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
On the Ground with Melbourne Heart By Linus Couper
It was a cold and rainy night when the new Australian soccer team Melbourne Heart clashed in a friendly with English soccer team Everton. I had been invited by Challenge to be a mascot in the Melbourne Heart soccer teamâ€™s very first match. Luckily the match was at Etihad Stadium, which had a roof, or it would have been a very wet game! I missed playing soccer this season because of my illness so I was quite excited about this match.
playerâ€™s entrance to the pitch, and everyone cheered when Tim Cahill came out. We all loved watching him play in the second half.
It was a good atmosphere with drums and chanting, but luckily there were no vuvuzelas! It was exciting waiting for the players at the
I had a great night and I would like to thank Challenge for inviting me to participate. It was an experience I will never forget.
It was a good match and Melbourne Heart played well, but not well enough to beat the English team Everton.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 55
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Women for Challenge The Women for Challenge program has grown in many ways over the last year with retreats, brunches and lunches offering more of our mothers the chance to get together to spend some time enjoying each other’s company. Mother’s Day is always an important day for our Mums and this year was no exception. Thirty of our mums met at the Leveson Hotel in North Melbourne and enjoyed a three course lunch, a few drinks and everyone was able to relax and chat.
Our retreats have been very well attended and with the Trevor Barker House having had some make-over magic now, the accommodation is more relaxing than ever before. Each retreat begins with a massage and facial treatment at Soul Skin Spa in Torquay.
Amazing food is prepared by Candoo Catering accompanied by beautiful wines from Yering and the natural beauty of the Torquay beachfront can be enjoyed from the house. Every detail is thought out so that each Mums’ Retreat affords our mums a much needed break from it all.
Time to recharge by Susan Turnbull
It’s very hard to explain what it means to me to be able to give back to Challenge in a small way by helping out with the Mums’ weekends away. 56 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Challenge came into our lives sometime in August 2005 when our second youngest daughter was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid leukaemia. Challenge was there for all of us during this time watching over us, staying close by, always ready to offer a smile or something to help distract every member of the family during the hardest journey Nat and our family will probably ever face. To say thank you isn’t enough.
People see the physical things Challenge does but I don’t know if they realise how much these help all of us emotionally. Someone once said that these kids are so sick for so long that they can forget how to get better. Distraction in the form of a meeting with a celebrity or sports star can give a child the will to get better, something to aim for during a time when treatment just seems to go on and on and on. I remember when I put my name down for my weekend away with the Challenge Mums. As the time got closer I kept thinking what am I
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
of their Life By Jade Barr
In July, the Team W Group held our 3rd Biennial “Time of your Life Ball” to raise funds for Challenge. Team W is a committee formed to raise funds in memory of Zane Barr, who was supported by Dave and the wonderful team at Challenge during his short battle with cancer. Our committee consisted of both old and new members who worked tirelessly to make our event a success. We were all excited by the support of the 300 people attending and found that when tickets went on sale this year, the word had spread far and wide about the fantastic time had at our previous balls, making ticket sales a little easier.
whole hotel, the mood was set for a great night as guests were serenaded on arrival.
popular along with the golf balls with original designs by Challenge children.
We were lucky to have Sam from Challenge and his lovely wife, La, join us on the night. Sam gave an emotional speech about the work Challenge does, which brought it all back to why we were all there. So it was time to raise some money.
Planning began last July, and as the date loomed our plans started falling into place with the wonderful help from the team at Challenge. A mail out requesting donations was sent out covering many businesses and industries and we were amazed by the response we received. We thank all the companies who sent parcels full of generous donations which assisted in raising money on the night.
In the past we sold balloons which each contained a mystery gift. As the famous balloons were so popular last time, it was decided we would have one for each person, including 50 platinum balloons which had more expensive gifts. They were again a great success and many people went home ecstatic with their gift.
When the lights came on and the crowd dispersed we were thrilled to announce we had raised $20,000. We know that Dave and the team at Challenge will use this money to assist families who are facing their toughest times. As I have been a part of one of these families, I know there is no better organisation to be involved with.
The venue for this year’s event was the Hilton on the Park ballroom. The night started with the talented Ryan McGhie and Cameron Bobbitt playing acoustic guitar in the foyer. With the music making its way through the
doing going away with a group of people I don’t know, I was sure I had better things to do, I think I was probably even trying to come up with any excuse not to go. But lucky for me I went. I met a group of very lovely Mums and we were treated like Queens. Even though we didn’t know one another we all shared something others will never understand. Conversation just flowed, as did laughter. We could just let our hair down, be ourselves and not worry about anyone else for a couple of days. I think it gave us a time to recharge so
After the balloons were sold, it was time to hit the dance floor and boy did Velvet Corporation get the party started! Everyone hit the dance floor and stayed until the very last song. Between the dancing, people were still placing bids on the silent auction items, with the Carlton Football Club Jumper being the most
we could come home with a new energy to face whatever was in store for us. Now I am able to offer my time to help Marg and the mums on retreats and it reminds me how special my weekend away was to me when I needed it and I always hope that maybe I have helped in a small way to give back to Challenge, who will always have a special place in my heart. PS: And remember – what happens in Torquay stays in Torquay!!
A big thank you to everyone who attended, a special mention to Franklin Printing who were great supporters and, of course, the fantastic encouragement from the guys at Challenge. The night would not have been a success without the hard work of the lovely committee (Amy, Cassidy, Carolyn, Dearne, Melissa and Michelle). As people were leaving the question on everyone’s lips was, “So when is the next Time of Your Life Ball?”...... Only time will tell! But if there is one in another 2 years I hope to see you there...
A Mum’s Thank You Thanks so much for all your hard work and nurturing on the Mum’s Retreat in Torquay. I had the most wonderful time and so appreciate the opportunity that Challenge has given me. You are all wonderful people. Thanking you very much, Jessica
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 57
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Carnegie Community Spirit By Sam Kirkham
The close knit community of Carnegie was deeply saddened by the recent loss of one of our own, young Luke Bailey.
It was decided by several members of our community to host a Biggest Aussie Pie Night for Challenge who had been a huge support to the Bailey Family, and will continue to be to other families in the future. We cannot imagine the pain this amazing family has been through and the hurt they feel today. We do know that Challenge helped significantly with their support. The Caulfield Bears Junior Football Club very kindly offered to host the event in July. The hot pies were generously donated by Four n Twenty and the whole community banded together to help organise the event. We had extremely generous donations from a number of individuals and local businesses. We had live and silent auctions, with football memorabilia being very popular. Luke’s mum, Leanne made pies that we auctioned on the night for record prices! They were delicious… It was a fun night for the whole family and the Carnegie community really got into the spirit of charity. Kids were entertained with games, 58 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
face and finger nail painting, a second hand toy stall, a plate smashing stall, paper aeroplane flying, handball competition and a sneak peak at a 3D TV thanks to Samsung. Highlights of the night were the “dares for sale” from the crowd, for senior community figures to sing and dance (very badly) to the Richmond theme song and money going to Challenge when men were dared to have their finger nails painted. The community spirit and support was overwhelming. With this cause being very close to everyone’s heart, there was no shortage of volunteers. Warming pies, selling tickets, entertaining the kids, donating auction and raffle items, the list goes on. Tim and Leanne Bailey, Luke’s parents, bravely spoke on the night and told us that they don’t know how they would have got through such a difficult journey without the support of Challenge. Luke himself and his brothers loved what Challenge did for their family – the camps, the holidays, trips to the Zoo – just to
name a few. One day, returning from a Challenge outing Luke piped up from the back seat saying, “You know this family is so lucky that I have cancer, or you never would have gotten to do all these things!” This just highlights Luke’s beautiful, positive nature and the amazing role Challenge plays in this most difficult of times. Tim and Leanne also talked about how Challenge will continue to be there for them and their sons who will be able to be involved in the program until they are 18. They said they will always feel a part of the Challenge family. The night was an enormous success all around. We were very excited to be able to say that we raised $8039.26 for the Challenge program. Luke and the Bailey Family are much loved in our community and the support shown and money raised is testament to this and to how much everyone wanted to support the organisation that supported them so much. Thank you to everyone who helped in any way to support a great event!!
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
By David Di Blasi
So I am lying in hospital one day and feeling horrible (something I have unfortunately had to feel lots of lately), when Micka from Challenge comes in and says “Mate, what’s something you really want to do”. My initial thoughts are leaning towards going overseas, but then I became a little more realistic! One thing I have always wanted to do was visit the set of The Footy Show while they tape an episode. A couple of days later we were told that Dave from Challenge had called his mate ‘Garry’ at the Footy Show and organised a couple of tickets for us. I was pumped! On the night of the show we arrived at the Channel 9 Studios and were taken through the back way to the best seats in the house – front row and right next to where the players walk out! Shane Crawford met us before the show to say hello and before you knew it the audience seats had filled up and filming was under way.
Daniel Connors from Richmond and Campbell Brown from the Hawks were on the panel along with the usual suspects. Throughout the show all the panellists came over to say hello and wish me the best. The show was hilarious and perhaps a little inappropriate at times which made it even more amusing! Brownie dumping manure over Sam’s head was a definite highlight! Thanks Challenge for taking me to The Footy Show and allowing me to have an unforgettable night. For once my mind was off the treatment and I got a much needed laugh. The special treatment we got was pretty good too!
Highly an ticipated
High Te a
By Elisa Busacca
elli, Silvana Gall agher, Committee L to R: Nancy Casusc Elisa Busacca ato, Sandra Madafferi, Helen Don
fundraising Following the success of their first e by leng Chal help to e chos event, LINC in se Hou t Asco at Tea High a ing hold 000. September. The aim was to raise $15, guests, The room was jam-packed with 234 l tiona emo an with n and the day bega a Crisara, presentation from special guest, Olivi g her durin ices a recipient of Challenge’s serv e leng Chal nt. patie er time as a young canc the d esse addr then rs CEO, David Roge aware of audience, which made us all more for does e the wonderful work that Challeng children and families. a fashion Other activities on the day included a et, Clos a’s Chitr by d sore spon parade ks to Matt Magician’s Mingle Magic with than
women decided In August 2009, a small group of to those less they wanted to make a difference l themselves fortunate than themselves. They cal Needy Causes’. ‘LINC’, which stands for ‘Linking into
t, a raffle Hollywood and Connect Entertainmen t won a ticke e Raffl and 3 silent auctions. Every y man the to ks than prize worth $20 or more were ts gues h whic rs, sponsors and dono delighted with. a most LINC are delighted to report they had for 655 $25, successful event and raised they had Challenge – over $10,000 more than anticipated!! ”, said “There is so much need out there rperson. Chai e’s mitte Com LINC the ra, Sand ort supp to “We are proud to be helping and do they work Challenge in the amazing ived rece ort supp us endo humbled by the trem t.” even this in lved invo by all those A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 59
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Junior Camp 2
The wait is By Eliza Hood
My brother had been on 2 Challenge Ju nior Camps before, and now that I was 4 yea rs old it was my turn to go. Yippee!
My leader, Lisa, called me through the week. I liked talking to her on the phone. She asked all about me, and I asked lots about her. Once I was sure she didn’t barrack for Collingwood, I was ready for Saturday to roll around. It was going to be soooooo good! I was very excited when Saturday finally came, and I had no problem getting up and ready to meet the bus at 8.30am. Ted (my brother) was a Junior Camp specialist by now, and told me about all the great things we would do. I had so many butterflies in my stomach it was amazing I wasn’t flying. 60 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Although they wouldn’t say it, Mum and Dad were more anxious than I was, but I climbed the stairs into the bus and didn’t look back. Looking very cool in my Junior Camp jacket, we headed straight to an indoor play centre and had “awesome fun”. The fun didn’t stop and when we got to camp, as there were lots of things waiting for us to do. A jumping castle, farm animals, a flying fox and heaps more. I got to make a teddy and cup cakes and learn circus tricks, and I loved riding in the fire truck and sitting in the police car.
When mum and dad arrived for the B.B.Q lunch on Sunday, they were excited to see me, but I was still too busy to even think about stopping for cuddles. Mum wanted to know everything, “Did you miss us?” she asked. How could I miss them when I had all these things to do and keep me busy? I did take them to see the cabin I had stayed in before walking them to lunch. Mum and Dad think I grew a foot in the 2 days! I had a great time with everyone from Challenge. I enjoyed being with the familiar faces I’ve grown up with, like Sonia and Jaime, but I also got to make new friends. Thanks Lisa for being the best leader and I can’t wait till next Junior Camp. Lots of love to all the great people at Challenge that made this “Soooooooo Awesome!” A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 61
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
Ride The motocross community’s support of the 2010 KTM Ride 4 Kids event continued in strong vain again this year. Over 150 riders of all disciplines enjoyed a fun filled day of dirt bike riding whilst raising funds for Challenge at the State Motorcycle Complex in Broadford. The enduro / crosscountry circuit was extremely challenging and provided riders with probably the toughest loop yet. As always, the young junior riders had the luxury of honing their skills on either the Supercross track or the learner track set up with the cones in the centre of the speedway circuit.
Due to Melbourne’s very wet winter, the motocross track was unfortunately not safe to ride on but participants all still had a ball ripping it up on the challenging enduro track.
so that new bikes could be purchased for the organisation’s annual Motorbike Camp. Congratulations Bryce – what an amazing gesture of kindness and generosity!!!
Professional rider Shannon Johnson from the Factory KTM road race team popped in, to not only get down and dirty on the track, but also to announce the prize winners and this year’s highest fundraiser award, which was a brand new 2011 KTM 350 SX-F courtesy of our major sponsor KTM.
This year’s event saw the newly named highest overall fundraiser’s award, the “Andrew McFarlane Perpetual Trophy” presented for the first time. The trophy was established to honour the memory of Australian motocross legend Andrew McFarlane and his lifetime commitment to the sport, including his support and continued contribution to the Ride 4 Kids event from when it first commenced in 2002.
Eleven year old motocross enthusiast Bryce Gathercole was the lucky winner and then humbled the crowd by announcing that he would be donating the bike back to Challenge
62 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Riding sessions went well into the afternoon, with every rider getting the most out of their
Kids time on the track. As usual, many had burning forearms by the end of the day, which would have felt great for the drive home! All in all the 2010 KTM Ride 4 Kids was an enormous success, raising a whopping amount of money for Challengeâ€™s support programs and services. Thank you so much to everyone who assisted in making the day such a huge success, including KTM, the Challenge volunteers and all of the enthusiastic riders.
We hope to see you in 2011 for our 10th anniversary. Letâ€™s make it a big one!!
Thank you so much to everyone who assisted in making the day such a huge success.... A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 63
Ch al le nge Winter Wackiness
By Claudia Viola
Should be there for one another, and they are! Challenge organised for me to visit the set of my favourite show, Neighbours and it was a truly amazing experience that I consider myself very lucky to have had. My family and I met Kelly who is the publicist for the show and who would be showing us around the set. Our first stop was a very large room that had a whole lot of mini kitchens and lounge rooms, all resembling the ones we see each night on TV in the show. It was quite a shock for me – I was actually expecting to see full sized houses! Even though these parts that you’d find in an ordinary house were very small, they were actually incredibly realistic. Each room was furnished with everything, from couches to fruit.
Then Matt Werkmeister (Zeke Kinski) walked in and we were able to chat to him and have our photo taken with him. He’s so tall and thin! We then proceeded to watch the first scene being shot, where some of the actors and actresses were filming in the school. We were shocked by the amount of lights and cameras in the ceiling that were needed to film the shot – there were hundreds of them! We stayed and watched for about 20 minutes and saw that each scene was acted out 4-5 times before they moved on. In between shooting, the lights and cameras would have to start again, so it can take up to 20 minutes to shoot a 30 second scene. Surprising, or what? We continued walking down a hallway, where we were introduced to Sandy, (Michael) Scott, (Lucas) Jordan, (Andrew) Jordy, (Summer) and Valentina, (Natasha.) They were all incredibly nice and welcoming. We of course, took some photos. As we continued walking, we were promptly greeted by Morgan, who plays Callum. He looks so much shorter in the show, but it’s not until you physically see him that you realise he’s a lot taller.
64 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
To end the day, we went on a tour of the buildings outside, and some known as ‘location.’ This included the Erinsborough Police Station, Harold’s, Lassiters, Charlie’s and The General Store. These were full-size buildings. Oh, and we can’t forget Lou’s Used Car business! We were farewelled by Kelly, all leaving with huge smiles on our faces. Okay, I lied – the day didn’t end there. On our own free will, we drove for a few minutes, and stopped at Pin Oak Court, also known in the show as ‘Ramsay Street.’ It was sort of weird, seeing all the houses in real life. I recognised almost all of them, and my Dad took some photos of me standing in front of each house. There was a security guard parked in one of the drive ways, just keeping an eye on us and making sure were weren’t there to make trouble! That unfortunately, really was the end of the day. But I still went home knowing I had a great time, and with many memories that I hope to never to forget. Thankyou Challenge, for organising such a great event for me!
The Food Industry Unites
to support Challenge! One of the most common things we talk about at Challenge is food! Why, you ask? Well, it is the one thing that can bring everything together, whether it is a fundraising event, hospital support or mums and dads. Food has the ability to break down barriers and make introductions just that little bit easier – and we love to eat it!!
In 2006 we were very fortunate to become the charity of choice of the Food Service Industry Association, whose membership includes many different companies within the food industry. This amazing group of people has not only raised an overwhelming amount of money for Challenge, but they have also helped with their passion for food, supporting us in a very hands-on manner at our Christmas Party, in hospital and even at this year’s Urban Camp. Special days have been created with companies involved in the FIA, like the monthly Pizza Friday at the RCH. I suppose one of the things that people don’t understand is that when kids are undergoing treatment, their appetites can change significantly, and so being able to provide them with as many tempting treats as possible to entice them to eat something, is very important.
Besides this, the FIA also take their fundraising very seriously, and throughout the year some amazing events are organised and conducted, with 100 percent of the monies raised being donated to Challenge to help continue our array of programs and services. These events would not be possible without the absolutely incredible work of the Executive Officer of the FIA, Carol Rothschild, whose passion and commitment to our organisation simply never waivers. If anything, she goes above and beyond anything we could ever hope for and there aren’t words to express our gratitude to Carol. After a difficult financial year it has been great to see the member companies of the FIA and their employees continuing to dig deep to support our programs. Challenge would like to sincerely thank the FIA and all of their member companies that continue to support Challenge, and we look forward to working with them all again in 2011.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 65
t s e g g i B
The Challenge Biggest Aussie Pie Night campaign was held throughout the winter months and was once again a huge success, thanks to the support of Four N’ Twenty, Rosella and the Collingwood Football Club, along with the hundreds of generous people who held and attended a pie night event. Did you know? The first pie appeared in around 9500BC in the Egyptian Neolithic period. Back then they were known as “Galettes” and from there the knowledge of making pies was transferred to the Greeks, then to the Romans and eventually, as we have recently seen on television, to the Scots!! But I think we can all safely say that Australia now “owns” the good old meat pie and it has become a part of our everyday lives. Forget the corporate lunch with the fancy sandwiches and sushi and bring back what everyone really loves to munch on – a good old party pie with sauce! So do your workmates a favour and hold a pie night event at your workplace next
year with pies aplenty – they’ll thank you for it and so will Challenge!
BAPN Launch Collingwood v St Kilda, 17th July Since 2007 the Biggest Aussie Pie Night has always had its official launch at a blockbuster Collingwood AFL game at the MCG. Who would have thought that this year’s launch round would see the clash of the eventual Grand Final teams? With the wonderful support of the Collingwood Football Club, more than 20,000 Four N’ Twenty pies were sold at the game, with a portion from each being donated to Challenge.
By Oskar Molini
I was so excited when I saw the Challenge invitation to see the movie “Despicable Me”, as I had been waiting to see it and I couldn’t wait until I got there! Challenge always seems to know the movies I like and I love going to their Movie Days with my family because I always see my other friends and get to watch the movies I like with them. We are so lucky that we get to have our own free popcorn and our own fizzy drink and we even get to choose the flavour!!
66 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
The movie was really, really good and funny, and it was nice that Challenge invited every Challenge kid to go with their parents and family. It is such a nice day together and always fun. How does Challenge always know what we want to see?? I can’t wait for the next Challenge Movie Day. We have been going to
these for the past few years and hope we can still keep going, as they are ace!! As a family we would also like to thank the staff at Greater Union Cinemas, who always put up with so many kids stampeding through their cinema! What an amazing bunch of people…
Ch al le nge Super Spring
Night For people who can’t hold their own pie night events, this is a great way to support this Challenge fundraising campaign. So watch out for the launch round in 2011 and remember to buy a pie at the game!
Auskick / Footy Clubs Once again this year we had fantastic support from many Auskick and footy clubs, who helped to raise some amazing monies and make people aware of the work that Challenge does. Our goal in 2011 is for every Challenge member to register their Auskick or footy club to hold a pie night event (and by footy we mean all codes – soccer and rugby included!) and help to raise vital funds for our organisation. So jump onto the website at www. biggestaussiepienight.com.au and register your team. One footy club who did just that this year was the Caulfield Bears Junior Football Club. They raised an amazing amount of money and had a great time doing it.
By Alan Witton
A D.U.C Day Out at AAMI Stadium With the compliments of the Melbourne Storm we were fortunate to be invited into a corporate box that allowed us all the chance to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon chatting and sharing stories with the other Challenge Dads, during the Storm v Canberra Raiders rugby match. We met new Dads, and caught up with those we had previously met. The corporate box was in the brand new AAMI Stadium and we all had a great day, especially in such luxurious surroundings. A half time visit to the room by Mr Ron Gauci the Melbourne Storm C.E O. was very much appreciated. The game produced a great result of 36 – 12 in favour of the Storm, which kept us cheering madly as Challenge would
benefit from the win through the “Points with a Purpose” campaign. Challenge had been chosen as the charity of choice for this particular Melbourne Storm home game, and it was good to see that the rain did not deter our CEO David Rogers from collecting a cheque for $17,500 on the day. One of many highlights was when star Melbourne Storm player Cooper Cronk
acknowledged the Dads at the end of the game. With all the cheering I think there may have even been a couple of Dads converted from AFL? Thank you to Challenge and to all who assisted with organising this event, particularly Lizzie Joyce from the Storm. Any opportunity to catch up with a fellow D.U.C Club member is gratefully appreciated.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 67
Ch al le nge Super Spring
By Daniel & Philip Roberts
When we arrived we were taken through the offices, including the costume departments, where we saw all the different police uniforms. Then we saw the scriptwriting rooms, and the props department, and all the cool stuff that goes on behind the scenes. We were then taken down to the make-up department where we met two lovely ladies. They explained how they make up the actors and showed us some of the stuff they use, like fake blood!!! We met several actors on their way to the set, which was just around the corner and Philip had his photo taken with 68 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Challenge had organised for my mum and I to visit the set of the hit TV series Rush with my brother Philip (who is having treatment for leukaemia). Philip is very keen to be a director when he gets older and I’d like to be an actor so the experience was so exciting.
Nicole de Silva who plays Stella and who was on crutches after breaking her leg! After a quick lunch at the local café with David from Challenge, we visited the set where the entire cast was filming a scene in the Police Headquarters. After we watched the actors do the scene (Philip even got to sit in the director’s chair) we were taken to the set next door where the Explosives Crew took us through a scene that they had set up which included gunfire and small explosions. The people showed us how they blow things up and create gunfire – this bit was awesome. As we were touring this scene Callan Mulvey (who
plays one of the leads, Josh) and Sam Johnson (who plays Leon the computer geek) came up to us and let us take a few pictures, and then took us back onto the set. They were really nice to us and made us feel like nothing was too much trouble. After this we watched a few more scenes acted out before taking a few pictures with the entire cast of the show. We would like to personally thank Challenge and David for giving us the opportunity to have this rare treat, along with Deborah from Southern Star and Peter Carrodus. Mum said the smile on Philip’s face was the best thing ever.
The BEST DAY of my life... so far... By Jamie Tasevski
I’m Jamie Tasevski, I’m 14 years old and I want to share my Grand Final experience with the whole Universe and even the whole Galaxy. Ever since I was born I’ve barracked for Collingwood. Every weekend I enjoy going to the footy with my dad and sister. Unfortunately this year has been a bit different because in April 2010 I was diagnosed with Leukaemia. Since then I haven’t been to the footy much – actually I haven’t been anywhere much. The closest I get to watching the Maggies is on the 34cm TV in the hospital. Not very entertaining when you have a beeping machine in one ear and nurses hounding me to take my pills in the other… Oh well, that’s life. Fast Forward to September 2010 and I CAN’T BELIEVE COLLINGWOOD IS IN THE GRAND FINAL. Woo Hoo! So imagine my disappointment when my doctors told me that I would be stuck in hospital for the last Saturday in September. Not even Micka from Challenge could cheer me up. At least my mum and sister decorated the room with streamers, balloons and posters for the big day. So on September 25th I got dressed up in my Collingwood Jumper and I was all set to cheer the Maggies on to a win. And then the game ended in a DRAWWWWWWWWWWWW... What the???????? I thought draws only happen in soccer... Play ON, Play ON I yelled.... but no one listened – How am I supposed to do this all again next week – I was BUGGERED.
Well, once again the doctors came around on the following Thursday to tell me that I would be stuck in hospital AGAIN. At least the streamers lasted. Then on a sunny Friday afternoon, just one day before the Grand Final replay, I saw Micka walking towards me with a big smile and two other people. “Hello Jamie” said Micka – “This is my boss David and his friend Jess from the Collingwood Footy Club” What is going on here? I thought. Then David (the big boss of Challenge) told me that he would like me to have two tickets to the Grand Final replay ... OMG and if that wasn’t enough, David then told me that Jess had organised for me to run through the Collingwood Banner with the players. Helllooooooooooo.... I had a smile bigger than Luna Park. WOW, what an awesome present. Mum and Dad were even crying! I hardly slept that night and was so excited – First I posted it on Facebook, then I rang everyone three times.
The next day I got to the ground at 1pm, and there was so much noise. I haven’t heard noise like that for a very long time. Then my dad and I went through what felt like twenty thousand security check points and finally Jess was standing there waiting for us in front of the Collingwood changing rooms. I saw Nathan Buckley first and then Eddie McGuire came over and shook my hand (I think my dad was more excited about Eddie). We eventually got onto the ground and there was a strange man playing strange music called Lionel Ritchie – Whateverrrrr… Then I took some cool photos and finally it was 2.20pm and I was told to stand near the banner and wait for the players to join me. I was sooooo nervous, I think I needed a wee bottle. OMG here they come – They were so big and strong and then all the players said hello to me and TOGETHER, SIDE by SIDE we punched and ran through the banner. I couldn’t believe what was happening, it was like a dream. Slowly the players ran off and there was no way I could keep up, so I just looked around and felt the energy of all the screaming fans. Even in the middle of the ‘G the noise was so loud. I eventually had to come off the ground and cheer from my seat. By the end of the day I had lost my voice, but I had just had the best DAY OF MY LIFE..... so far........... Thank you Challenge and Collingwood for giving me the best present ever... GO PIES!
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 69
Ch al le nge Super Spring
p am C n ba Ur
We were stoked! We had been invited to the MASSIVE Challenge Urban Camp... Sunday We arrived at Urban Camp all excited (and a little late because Mum got the dates mixed up!). We met a whole lot of new people, found our rooms, explored the campsite, settled in and sat down to a big dinner. After filling our stomachs, we met a mad magician called Crazy Pete. He performed tricks that had our minds confused and our brains dazzled. After lots of amazement, we headed off to bed and gave ourselves a long rest because we knew we had a big week ahead of us.
Monday After waking from our sleep, we ate a great big breakfast and hopped on a bus to Phillip Island. It was a long drive. When we arrived at Phillip Island we went to Amaze N Things. We were all kept busy with a massive maze. We got lost but managed to find our way out eventually. Then there was mini golf and puzzle island which were really fun and amazing. There was a room called the gravity room which was an optical illusion which really bewildered us. Next, a mirror maze which was extremely difficult. We couldnâ€™t find the exit for so long. After broken noses and sore body parts, we entered a room which had many fun challenges and activities. One of the activities was a seven metre drop slide which was really scary. The drop sent your tummy up to your mouth and you get a sudden sensation which tingles your body. Having such an amazing time makes you tired, so when we arrived back at Urban Camp, we slept like logs. 70 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Girls will be Girls
By Owen and Joel Bowditch
Night at the museum
Tuesday A delicious breakfast... We then took off for â€œThe City Chaseâ€?. We had to run around the city and answer questions. It was really fun. We then played games at Birrarung Marr and had lunch. After lunch we went to ACMI and learnt and played with green screens, like they use when making movies. We had an Alice in Wonderland background. Then back to Birrarung Marr where we played some more then back to camp. We met a Circus performer who taught us circus skills. We learnt how to use Hula Hoops, Diablo, Devil Sticks and spinning balls.
After trying to show off with new tricks, we made some kites. We got to create our own design on the front of the kite and then we attached sticks and string. That night, after dinner, we left the campsite and headed off to the Yarra River. We were told that we were going to party all night long, on a boat! We jumped on the three-level boat..... and started to explore. When we heard the music we started to dance and sing in a little room. We partied for a whole two hours before heading back to Urban Camp and snoozing. What an action packed day.......! A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 71
Urban Camp 2010
Boys will be Boys !
Wednesday What a start to the day.....! Waking up to a false fire alarm. With a tummy full of breakfast, we headed off to the Melbourne Zoo. We then checked out all the animals including Lions, Elephants, Tigers, Monkeys, Reptiles, Zebras, Giraffes and heaps of other animals. After lunch we explored all the other animals then headed back to the campsite. Then something special...! Trampoline Ice-cream which was just great. We flew our kites and it was dinner time already. Then off to the movies. We saw “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” which I enjoyed... Back to Urban Camp excited but exhausted. We crashed for the night.....
Thursday Another delicious breakfast... And off to MSAC. (Do these activities ever slow down...?) Wave pool, slide, wave pool, slide, wave pool, slide, wave pool, slide, wave pool, and slide. Great fun. Then back to Urban Camp for a big lunch. After lunch we hopped onto the buses and we were on our way to the M.C.G for a tour. We saw all the sports memorabilia and also watched them setting up for the AFL Grand Final on Saturday. We saw the giant 72 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
football hot air balloon and the band practising (a band called INXS – never heard of them but the leaders were excited!). Then we headed off to the Melbourne Museum where we would be sleeping for the night. Amazing – nobody else ever gets to do that! We got to do a little exploring and found our sleeping places for that night. The most popular place was near the Giant Squid. After demolishing all the La Porchetta pizza, we had a talent show. Many people performed amazing tricks and many people sang and danced. We sang as well. In the end, the show lasted for about an hour. “Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz” was all we heard after that.
Friday We woke up at the Museum and prepared for one of the best days of the camp. After breakfast and a little bit more exploring at the Museum, we hopped on the bus and headed off to our destination – The Royal Melbourne Show! We all were sorted into groups and we headed off to many different rides. Some of
the best rides were No Limit, Pirates Revenge, The Ghost Train and EUROSLIDE. There were many other rides and all of them were fun. We even bought some show bags and won some prizes. It was an amazing time and it was really fun. Before we headed back to Urban Camp, we were all given two show bags which were really cool. We had a great, great week..... We met lots of new friends, and wonderful leaders. We saw great places, did great activities and had an experience that we will never forget it. We cannot believe how much we did.... Thank you to everyone involved and a super special thank you to Challenge.......
Ch al le nge Super Spring
Coca-Cola Amatil ! e g n e l l a h C e h t o t p u s p e st
a Amatil’s Zei Raydan, one of Coca-Col Children’s employees with one of 40 the to Challenge gift pack’s made to donate
2010 has seen the partnership between Coca-Cola Amatil and Challenge grow, as employees rallied to show their support through fundraising initiatives in September and October. Coca-Cola Amatil are proud to have partnered with Challenge for two major initiatives including: Sustainability September activities and a relaunch of the Thirst For Giving employee contribution program – which to date has helped raise over $10,000 for Challenge. Sustainability September is an internal program that Coca-Cola Amatil run each year to focus on ‘Citizenship’, one of the key values within our business. Across September & October, we ran a number of activities including: World Cup fundraising activities, Gold Coin donation tins, Aussie Pie Challenge, Coca-Cola’s Thirst for Giving Program, The ‘Mad Hatters’ Trivia night and the Senior Leaders Gift Making Workshop to name a few. In total during Sustainability September, CocaCola Amatil Victoria have raised $12,200, donated 40 Christmas Hampers for kids, and
continue to raise funds through the employee Thirst for Giving Program. CCA has been lucky enough to have Challenge speak to our group at a number of different forums about the work that they do for families who have children with cancer. Specifically, at a recent Senior Leaders Program, David Rogers, the CEO of Challenge, touched many of the group. It was an opportunity for our team to take the time to step back and realise how they have made a difference to the lives of those touched by tragedy. This show of support has been further carried through the business as several employees’ families have been touched by cancer, in particular Jordy Curtis (daughter of Lyn & Steve Curtis) who have had a strong affiliation with Challenge over the last 2 years. For CCA, it has been reassuring knowing that we are supporting one of the many charities who have
ns Manager, Sam McOrist and CCA Operatio CCA Trivia Night Tracey Wagner at the Annual
supported our own employees through a very difficult time. Coca-Cola’s Victorian team is proud to have chosen Challenge as their charity partner in 2009 and 2010. This experience has touched us in so many ways, firstly through the personal connection with Jordy Curtis, and secondly through the interaction and collaboration with David, Sam and the team from Challenge. We look forward to continuing the dynamic relationship between CCA & Challenge. A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 73
Welcome to the
By Leesa Gathercole
Fun house The annual Challenge Ball was held at the Hilton on the Park – Melbourne on the first Saturday in October, as is the Challenge tradition.
The theme for this year’s Ball was ‘Fun House’ – most fitting judging by the atmosphere in the room. Although with the replay of the Grand Final having taken place that afternoon, maybe the theme should have been changed to ‘Good old Collingwood’!! The evening started with a bang thanks to ‘Cirque Mystique’. This one-man show performed acts that left us all wondering how and why he would come up with his ideas! Perching on a ladder which isn’t leaning up against anything while juggling a chainsaw can be quite scary – especially for the guests in the front row! The dance floor was overflowing from the moment our favourite band, Velvet Corporation stepped onto the stage. In fact, whenever they appeared on stage throughout the night, it often seemed that all 515 guests were on the dance floor at the same time! Velvet Corporation has been a long time supporter of the Challenge Ball and every year the Ball Committee receives wonderful feedback regarding the entertainment on the night. This year was no exception. The guest speaker on the night, Xenia, told her story as a childhood cancer survivor. She is now 23 and spoke very poignantly about how Challenge personally helped her through her cancer journey as a 15-year old. 74 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Xenia’s speech was followed by two video presentations, which highlighted not only the fantastic support that Challenge offers those families undergoing treatment – camps, tickets, activity days, celebrity meet and greets, etc – but also how they continue to support those families who have lost a child, however and wherever possible. These presentations, coupled with Challenge CEO David Rogers’ moving speech, made us all even more determined to put our hands in our pockets to help support Challenge.Each year the task of sourcing auction items gets harder and harder and Challenge staff, committee members, volunteers and sponsors work tirelessly to insure that a fantastic array of wonderful auction items are available on the night. These auction items are vital to maximise fundraising opportunities for Challenge and this year there was a large variety of auction items up for grabs. Silent auction items ranged from Kate Hill luggage, wine and restaurant vouchers, to toys and sporting memorabilia. The main auction items included a Dane Swan framed and signed jumper, obviously very popular after the Grand Final win; a Nick Riewoldt framed and signed jumper, a boat cruise on the bay for 40 people, Gippsland Winery Tour for 10 people in a stretch limo, a 5 night Central Australia
holiday and a stunning Jan Logan designer onyx and diamond pendant. Other fundraising on the night included the Lucky Dip, where prizes included hair straighteners, iPod docking stations and more. This was the first year that the Lucky Dip has been offered and due to the overwhelming response (items were almost sold out before the doors opened!), I’m sure it’ll be back next year. The Key Draw was popular once again this year, with guests purchasing a key in the hope that theirs would be the lucky key that opened the lock and won them $1000 worth of Coles Myer Gift Vouchers. Guests were also able to purchase a cocktail with a take-home novelty flashing cocktail glass, which put them in the draw to win a 14 carat white & yellow gold bracelet from Holloway Diamonds. A big thank you to our generous sponsors & supporters, many of whom have been supporting this event for many years. Without their ongoing support the Challenge Ball would not be as successful as it is. Thank you to Tom Gleisner who was our wonderful MC for the night and our auctioneer Ross Johnston from Allprop Real Estate who squeezed every last dollar out of the crowd for our main auction items with his catch cry of “Come on Tiger, just a couple more dollars”! Thanks to Staging
From the feedback received, this year’s Challenge Ball was certainly one of the best ever and it will be difficult to top the success next year.
Connections for the stunning room set-up, Zest Bars for helping with the cocktails, Velvet Corporation for the fantastic music, as always, Yering Station, Holloway Diamonds, the ALH Group and Hilton on the Park. A big thank you also, to the companies, families and friends who donated items for the night. From the feedback received, this year’s Challenge Ball was certainly one of the best ever and it will be difficult to top the success next year. This is what we will strive for though, and so the hard work begins! Funds raised on the night allow Challenge to support not only the sick kids but the entire family, including brothers and sisters who are also greatly affected by the whole cancer journey and mums and dads, who sometimes need a house cleaner, meals prepared or just a day of pampering. I can speak from personal experience – when you’ve been living on the Oncology Ward day after day, month after month, there is nothing more reassuring than knowing that Challenge is looking out for you and your family. The journey with Challenge doesn’t end at the hospital; the journey continues on and on, with Challenge there with you every step of the way.
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 75
Journey A Family
By Anna Robinson
In April 2004 our son Jack woke up with a lump the size of a golf ball in his neck. We took Jack to our GP and then were referred on to Monash Medical Centre. Our initial diagnosis was an abscess, which was surgically drained and treated with antibiotics.
While on the ward I met many families. I was quite shocked hearing about their child’s diagnosis and couldn’t imagine how it would feel to be told your child has a life threatening condition. I was feeling fortunate that Jack “just” had an abscess, we would go home and life would resume as normal.
Extremely rare condition Three weeks later my little boy became unwell again. My bright, happy and energetic one year old was lethargic and miserable. Jack was admitted to hospital once again and a series of tests and treatments began. It is an extremely traumatic experience watching your child go through many painful procedures and become anxious during this investigative period. After nine days we were given the dreaded news that Jack has Chronic Granulomas Disease, a life threatening immune condition. Basically his neutrophils did not work so any fungal or bacterial infection could be fatal. Our doctor explained that it is an extremely rare X-linked genetic condition and the only cure was a bone marrow transplant. Our emotions were all over the place. We were completely overwhelmed and scared. Being a nurse myself, I had a fairly good insight into what lay ahead for Jack and our family. We spent the next 18 months in and out of Monash, with one stay being over three months. I stayed with Jack most of the time sleeping with him and he became a very popular boy on the ward and was known around the hospital. He was a very lovable, cheeky little man and he had so much energy for such a sick child. We were lucky to have a supportive family and wonderful friends who helped us along the way. Going through something like this really makes it clear who you can rely on in life. 76 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
“Neutrophils help fight bacteria in our bodies. Without them we can be at great risk. Having very low to no neutrophils is known as neutropenia.” A stronger person
Excited for a cure
Our beautiful child
Finally we got the news that a cord blood match had been found and Jack was going to have a bone marrow transplant at the Royal Children’s Hospital. We were excited that he would be cured but also scared of what was ahead. It was at this time that we were introduced to Challenge.
However, Jack started getting sick again and we watched him deteriorate before our eyes. We always held hope that the doctors would work out a way to fix him and never imagined that we would ever have to say goodbye.
In August 2005 we packed our bags, said our goodbyes and headed to the Transplant Room where 2 ½ year-old Jack was going to spend the next few months having extreme treatment and living in isolation. He had days where he was very distressed and unwell and other days that I couldn’t hold him back. There is nothing in the world worse for a mother than seeing her child suffer. His bravery was so inspiring and nothing held him down for too long. During transplant time the Challenge staff were amazing. They kept us well supplied with DVD’s. “Thomas” and “The Wiggles” were Jack’s favourites. We also met other families and were able to share meals at the monthly Challenge Parent Dinners on the ward; have a friendly chat in the corridors; have a massage or nails done; all thanks to the dedicated people that support Challenge. Jack was making a remarkable recovery, was cured of his disease and we were discharged from hospital full of hopes and dreams for a wonderful future with our son. We were finally well enough to engage in activities and we were invited to see “The Wiggles” with Challenge. We also popped into Challenge House to visit Santa. This was a major highlight in Jack’s life.
Surrounded by family and friends in the ICU on the 11th of March 2006 we were told it was time to say goodbye. It was Jack’s 3rd birthday. This is something no parent should ever have to do and I can remember it as clear as day. Afterwards, we held our son for hours and later walked out the hospital doors thinking it must be a bad dream but it wasn’t. The reality was our beautiful child had died and our lives were never ever going to be the same.
Changed outlook You wonder if you will ever cope with such a loss and your outlook on life does change. You get frustrated with people complaining about trivial things. It is hard on all the family as everyone grieves in their own way and you feel so alone. Some people don’t know what to say so they avoid you and others can be very supportive. All I wanted to do was talk about Jack. I wanted everyone to remember him and love him like we did. The most valuable tool for me was talking with other bereaved mothers. I was invited to attend a bereaved mums’ weekend with Challenge and it was the perfect opportunity for me to be able to talk about Jack. I met some amazing mums. We shared stories, cried, ate, drank and were pampered.
If I had to find something positive that has come from my experience it would be that I am a much stronger person. I feel I can cope with almost anything. Also, we are bonded in a way that most other people can never understand, with the friends we made in hospital through our sick children. We have shared experiences that other people have been spared. I have been lucky enough to have had a beautiful little girl. Molly is two, full of spark and looks a lot like her big brother. She is growing up knowing about Jack and when she is older she will know his story. People ask me “How do you do it? How do you stay so strong and positive?” I say, “Do I have a choice? What is the alternative?” I am a strong person and looking back on all that we have endured I do sometimes wonder how we have come out the other end. Molly has made a huge difference to our family and to my outlook on life. We have something very precious and something to be very grateful for. Every child is precious but after losing a child you feel it even more.
What Challenge means to me Challenge brings happiness and support to families at a time of intense anxiety of the unknown and grief. It helps bring families together to support one another. The smiles on the kids’ faces when Jaime, Micka or Sonia walk in the room says it all. I now look forward to the Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend Gala Dinner each year and enjoy talking to the mums I met through our journey. I read Inside Challenge magazine and am uplifted by the stories of all the courageous kids out there. Challenge provides the most amazing support and experiences for these kids and their families and I feel proud to be a member of such a fantastic group. A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 77
Reflections Refl & thanks Dear Challenge,
A quick note of thanks from Amy and myself for a great weekend at Motorbike Camp. I was proud to be part of a good bunch of kids. Good to see everyone having a go. The by-product of the weekend, was the quality time I got to spend with Amy as well.
Firstly, I would just like to let you know how fabulous the Gala dinner was again this year. This was the second year I have been and I know that it will definitely not be the last. I organized two tables this year and I’m sure next year I’d have the same if not more.
I am writing this letter to say how wonderful the Diamonds Dinner was. The room looked amazing and the food and the drink service were just great. The band was to die for and we had a wonderful night.
Thanks again. Alan and Amy
Dear Challenge, We wanted to say a huge thank you for all the support that you have given us over the last few years. Challenge was a huge part of our lives while Tiffany underwent her treatment and beyond, we enjoyed playgroup each week and Tiffany loved being able to hang out with others her age and have fun. Challenge makes life more positive for the children and the family’s, just seeing Sonya each week and her positive & caring ways and the way the children would light up in her company, you can see she absolutely loves her job 100%, thank you Sonya. To Dave, Jamie and the Challenge team you are all such remarkable people and make such a difference in each and everyone’s life, we cannot thank you all enough. We are now living in Queensland but hope to be able to pop in again and say hello to you all, Tiffany & Luca would love that too. Thank You Scott, Larissa, Tiffany and Luca
78 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Thank you to all who help to organize this most amazing event, it’s a fantastic night when you know your feet have blisters on them from dancing the night away! You are truly a wonderful organization and I tell everyone about you and all your efforts. I know that without Challenge, our time during and after Will’s illness would not have been the same. Thank you again and I can’t wait until next year. Lianne
All in all it was a wonderful occasion, and one that I was proud to be associated with. Thankyou, Pam
Dear Challenge, Thank you for a seamlessly organised, high quality night at the Diamonds Dinner. It could not be faulted and the atmosphere generated was a testament to hard work in all areas.
The Challenge staff, families and volunteers have been deeply saddened by the loss of our much-loved members who have passed away since the production of our last magazine. We extend our deepest sympathies to the families of these children – our thoughts are with you.
Jane Hendriks Nyabuok Gok Liam Foster Khoa Pham Ashton Chee Samuel Wilson Peta Margetts Oliver Stewart Ethan Hanley Ruby Thomson Chloe Warren-Banfield
Benjamin Hanlon-Ward Luke Bailey Michael Belacic Ben Clark Cooper Barnes Olivia Sankey Callum Bone Salvatore Gulli Madelyn Tronson Tim Lawson
David Di Blasi Chloe Raymond Sam Tremayne Thuy Tran Xavier Gilmour Mackenzie Reid Henry Xiao Henry Dewar Mikayla Francis Alecsandar Davidovic
& thanks I admire you all from David the CEO, to Sonia at Playgroup to the committees and support people.
( I know what I’m taking next year for the end of the night when my feet will be killing me, as they normally do....)
Thank you for all your hard work, Louise
Well done. Leesa
Dear Challenge, The Diamonds Dinner is one of the most amazing nights of the year….. It is the most remarkable gift to us all, to catch up in that way, to talk until there is no oxygen left in the room. I was able to catch up with a number of other superb mothers whom I have not seen for some time, one recently bereaved, two who have children who have just relapsed, and several whose children are doing fine at present against all odds. The latter category includes me, as James scanned clear on Wednesday, against every possible statistic. I know that you know what a great job Challenge does. It makes every difference at times in getting through the next week, or day, or sometimes hour. In my case, putting on the dancing shoes and being able to express my delight at James’ miraculous scan result in such company was truly a diamond moment. Thank you for making it possible. From Jenny
Dear Challenge, Thank you very much for our lovely time down at the Torquay house, we all relaxed and had a great time. Thanks also for the fantastic day at the Williamstown Boat day, we all had a ball especially Harry who loved the pirates. Love Harry and family
Dear Challenge, I just wanted to drop a note of Thanks to you and the entire Challenge team for providing us the opportunity to visit the Gold Coast. We had a fantastic trip. Aarush and all of us enjoyed our stay at the Breakfree Resort. Aarush has taken up to swimming once again … It was truly a home away from home with nothing lacking… and provided us the much needed time to regroup as a family after the gruelling last year.
Warm Regards, Aarush and family
The night of Diamonds Dinner was a huge success. The food was great, the entertainment was great, the show bags - wow, they were a huge hit this year. The best so far. I think 70% of the women walked out with their slippers on. It was a good look, all frocked up and walking through Crown with slippers on.
Reading the entries in the visitor book in the apartment gave me a greater appreciation for the important work you do. Good luck with your endeavours and hopefully we will be able to support your organization in future fundraising events. Kind regards, Jocelyn
Dear Challenge and the Wise Family, On behalf of my family I would like to say a huge thank you to all those involved in making it possible for our daughter to receive the “Christopher Wise Education Scholarship”.
Thank you once again..
Bay” raffle last year. On behalf of my family I would like to thank you for this opportunity, we had a great time and the apartment and resort itself are fantastic.
The financial assistance from people such as Sue, Philip and Claire Wise is truly amazing. Their help will make a difference to her recovery. We are glad to have been given this wonderful gift from people who obviously know and understand how much things change in your life after treatment. This is a positive and practical approach to assisting families. We are aiming to start her Gym Membership soon, dependant on her energy levels. Her attitude is fantastic but the effects of radiation are making things tricky at the moment and it is still only a few months since the last chemo treatment. Once again thank you to all concerned for this amazing opportunity, it means so much to our family.
We recently had the opportunity to stay at the apartment at Diamond Beach Resort due to my husband winning the “Keeping Cancer at A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 79
Reflections & thanks
Dear Challenge Hi, my name is John, I am Xavier’s father. My sons and I would like to say thank you very much for the opportunity and for the awesome day we had on Saturday at the Grand Prix. It was our first time attending a Grand Prix, and it was everything and more that we expected it to be. It was also great to meet other children and their fathers, and sharing our stories. My boys had a wonderful time, had their first helicopter ride, which they said was unforgettable. Our hosts David and Karen were fantastic, they did such a great job with the kids and making us feel comfortable.
Dad were a great respite from the hospital. The aquarium when her sister Sharna came down in September was fun. The tickets to the Greenday concert made the last round of chemo a bit easier for Summer. The Christmas gifts for Summer and Sharna were well received and liked and the Christmas box of goodies was well enjoyed. I would like to give special thanks to Micka for being on the ward. Summer enjoyed playing cards and making fruit salad. Also thanks for making me laugh, sometimes it can be hard on the ward. A big hug to you all.
John, Xavier and Elijah
Dear Challenge, Thank you all so much for our tickets to A Day On The Green. We braved the stormy weather to be entertained by Diana Krall and band who were fantastic. Once again you guys enabled us to do something special that we would not have been able to do for ourselves. So thanks again, Sally
Tracey and Summer
Today Emily, with her sister Monique started Prep school (we had a small story on Channel Nine News) – Emily was in her element, her confidence is returning slowly, and we can only hope that she keeps up her amazing fighting spirit.
We have just returned end of last week from a week away to Broadbeach, G.C., staying at your apartment at the Diamond Beach Resort. Firstly to Sonia, thank-you for the suggestion and the timing for us was awesome. Emily as did the rest of us, had an absolutely restful, happy, fun, relaxing, wonderful experience. By the end of the week, Emily was remembering some of her early swimming lessons from early last year and she with Monique just wanted to swim everyday, which they did – weather was low 30’s each day. Jaime for arranging all for us – all information provided, everything including a follow up call the day before – thank you.
Dear Challenge, Just want to say thank you for your help and kindness over the last eight months. The finals tickets to the two Collingwood games with her
80 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
And David although we have not met – another thank you to you also. May we say that the team of people you have around you, I know you would and should be proud of. This is one family since meeting people like Sonia, Micka, Jaime, etc, that can only speak in volumes of the support that Challenge have provided to us, in our time of need. So from all of us, a very big THANK YOU and I know we will be in complete support for Challenge, as you all really do make a difference to families that need support from time to time.
Words cannot express our gratitude, we are very very grateful. Keep up the wonderful work, and God Bless you all. Much Love
overwhelmed. Plus the Scooby Doo DVD – must be nearly worn out from the girls re-watching time and again.
Doreen & Ken – for the use of the Tarago, again thank you for the ease in having it available for us but also to arrive in the apartment to have food in the fridge, jams, foils, beach towels, games, we were
Kind regards to you all, Nick, Dee, Emily and Monique
Dear Challenge, Thankyou for letting me go on Corryong camp 2010. I had a fantastic time! I really enjoyed going motorbike riding at the farm and on the biscuit rides on the river. It was fun playing bowls for the first time too! Can’t wait for the next camp!!!! From Julian
Letters to Leuk Hi Gang, We’re having a ball here on Treasure Island in Fiji. Jake is having fun feeding the turtles and fish and I’m enjoying some time off! Beautiful weather and beautiful people here on Treasure Island.
Thank you for a lovely day today at Williamstown. All of us had a great day. Regards, Consiglio’s X6
I hope Challenge continues forever so other kids get to experience what I did.
Hello from us – Monique and Jake Hey – Thanks so much Challenge for a fantastic Family day at Williamstown Pirate Attack!! As always we had a ball. Hi Challenge, Just wanted to say a very big thankyou for the tickets to the game on Sunday, Challenge did really well out of it so it was great to be there to cheer on the Storm! Thanks again, Natalie
Challenge and Micka you do a great job thank you for helping all the kids smile and looking out for the parents, it really does help!
Regards, Alison, Paul and Isabella
I would just like to say thanks for the use of the footy tickets on Saturday night. We ended up with great seats thanks to Challenge.
I regret to inform you that I can not take part in Challenge events anymore because I have started full time study towards a nursing degree in NZ. Though brief, I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Challenge, and can’t speak highly enough of the organisation and Micka.
Just a pity Hawthorn forgot to play footy. Our family is split 50/50. The Collingwood supporters were VERY happy.
Thank you for letting me be a part of your charity during my travels. I’ve never felt so attached to another organisation, I wish I could be a part of it from over here.
Yours truly, Summer and family
I hope in future I can be with you again.
Yours Mitch, Jill, Nardia, Ryan and Callum
My brother, my friend, my brother’s friend and I had a great time at the Slumber party! I liked watching Shrek and Marmaduke. My friend and I played a lot on the Jumping Castle, Dance Floor and Air Hockey. Julian and his friend loved playing the Daytona machines because Julian always won! We went to bed at 1:30 but we fell asleep at 2:30am. Julian and his friend didn’t sleep at all!!!!
I want you guys to know how important Challenge is in a teenager’s life! The impact you guys have on us is beyond what any words can explain.
I just want to thank you for the fantastic tickets for the Carole King & James Taylor Concert last Friday night. It was a great opportunity to take some family & friends who have given us continued support. We all had a wonderful evening & wish to convey our appreciation of your on going efforts.
Thank you so very much for my “Whitney Houston” tickets, we enjoyed the show very much. It was great to have a break out after being in isolation for so many months. You are the “Greatest”. Thank You, Donna
Many thanks & kind regards, Cathy & Paul
Thank you for letting us go. From Nicola and Julian
A year of fun! : Inside Challenge January 2011 : 81
Letters to Leuk Thank you so much for inviting me to AC/DC. I enjoyed it so much. Harry my friend appreciates the t-shirt and I do too. I have now felt the thrill of being a bogan!
Thank you for organizing AC/DC tickets. The concert was awesome. Rock on. From Reilly & Tracey
Thanks very much for the use of the PS2. Also, a big thank you for flying our Grandma down to look after my brother and sister while we were in hospital. We really appreciated it.
Thank you so much for the passes to the Australian Open. We had a great day, stayed from morning ‘til night and saw lots of tennis and had lots of fun. Thanks again for all you do. Kindest regards, Alexandra and Leah, Stephanie and Ron
Thank you sooooo much for everything. The party was fantastic and I love the present. Aoife says thank you too and is thrilled with her gift. We all loved the face painting and Aoife got a pink butterfly which is smudged so much now. Love Mollie and Aoife
Thank you for those lovely presents they were just what we wanted. The face painting was great. Love Niamh
Just a short note to say a big ‘thankyou’ for the Nintendo Wii Thomas received for Christmas. It’s been a big hit and beats a lot of the boredom of being in hospital for so long. You guys are great. Thanks so much! From Tim, Sue, Thomas and Nicholas
82 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!
Just a short note to say thank you for inviting Blayne and myself on the Young Endeavour last Friday. We had an awesome day with Micka, Sam, the other kids and crew. Thanks again, Matt & Blayne
Thank you very much for organizing the Andrew Gaze and Melbourne Tigers experience for Isaac and us all. Thanks again
F e is
l Cha y mil
a is F
k o bo e ac f on
he t h it re w a e t e da lleng r. o a t e a y up s Ch he p t e g t e K hin ghou t t a gre g throu e k g n n o i e o o d ll eb ncer a c h a C f eca e n g h n o alle t y n i t i n com/ch Jo u mm ebook. o c .fac
ie e ng Famil lle s Cha nect n co
s u e k i L
84 : Inside Challenge January 2011 : A year of fun!