CHEK Upside: KidsRun Victoria goes virtual again for 2021

CHEK Upside: KidsRun Victoria goes virtual again for 2021
WatchKidsRun Victoria is encouraging Islanders to run or walk their favourite 1 or 5 kilometre route to raise money to fight childhood cancer.

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For the past 12 years, the annual KidsRun Victoria has been bringing smiles and raising funds to fight childhood cancer.

While this year’s event will once again be virtual, it will still provide a huge boost to causes such as Victoria General Hospital’s pediatric oncology unit.

“Our clinic has been improved tremendously, all by donated funds through our families who are trying to pay it forward to try and help other families,” says nurse Anne Carrelli.

“We have bedside carts with our supplies at the bedside so we’re not having to step away to get more equipment, we have rooms that are so much more beautiful than what they were.”

The brightened-up spaces also provide a source of happiness for children spending long days receiving treatment.

“Just having that pleasant environment for the kids to get their care in and spend all day in while they’re here is huge for us as well as for the family,” says Carrelli.

“We see first hand where the money this money goes and it’s incredible for the families just to keep it comfortable like what Anne said but also just keep it as positive as we can,” adds fellow nurse Sarah Fitton.

Another beneficiary of KidsRun is the Island Kids Cancer Association. Created by Susan Kerr after her son Jacob was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the association helps families both during and after treatment.

“The funding is critical obviously, but it [KidsRun] gives families a sense of community,” says Kerr.

“I’ve seen families over 12 years attending kids run and really it embraces the superheroes for who they are,” adds Kerr.

The run also gave Kerr a lasting memory of her late son. When Jacob’s cancer returned at the age of 17, he made it his mission to finish the KidsRun 5K.

“He decided to see if he could do it just to do it and he did and he surprised everybody, including myself, who ran behind him, and he crossed that finish line,” says Kerr.

So for anyone thinking of running or donating.

“Just do it for the families because it’s a critical cause and the impact of these funds, really they help these families so much,” says Kerr.

The virtual event runs until the end of May, with participants are encouraged to run or walk their favourite one- or five-kilometre route. To register or donate visit the Sole Sisters website.

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Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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