Have you heard about a disease called scleroderma? Scleroderma means “hard skin”, and is a long- term auto-immune disease affecting the connective tissue of the body.
Connective tissue is the tissue that connects and supports your joints, muscles, skin and organs. There are two major types of scleroderma:
- Localised scleroderma (sometimes called ‘morphea’). This form of scleroderma affects only the skin and sometimes the tissues beneath it (for example, muscle). This can lead to stiffness and difficulties moving the joints in the affected areas.
- Systemic sclerosis. This form affects the connective tissue throughout the body, including blood vessels, joints, the digestive system (oesophagus, stomach and bowel), and occasionally the lungs, heart, kidneys and muscles.
Local Sammie Jansen lost her dear mother, Kim Lesslie, last year to scleroderma after a six-year struggle. Sammi is determined to do something to change the situation for people with scleroderma and has arranged four fund-raising events for Scleroderma Australia to coincide with World Scleroderma Day on June 29th:
1. Saturday 25th June: Afternoon bowls at the Boorowa Ex Services and Citizens Club. Bowls will kick off with a sausage sizzle starting at 12:30pm. To secure your place/your team’s place, please either message Sammi through the Boorowa Recreation Club Facebook page or call the Boorowa Ex Services and Citizens Club on 6385 3338.
2. Sunday 26th June: Kim Lesslie charity shield golf day at the Boorowa Recreation Club. The game starts at 10am, and a two-person ambrose costs $50 per team. Morning tea and lunch will be provided.
3. Wednesday 29th June: Morning tea/brunch at the Boorowa Ex Services and Citizens Club. Please call the Club to book a table on 6385 3338.
4. Wednesday 29th June: One of the biggest coups Sammi has achieved is having the Boorowa Clock Tower included in Scleroderma Australia’s “Shine Like a Sunflower” program. Each year on World Scleroderma Day, 110 Australian iconic buildings are lit up with yellow light representing sunlight and warmth that sufferers with scleroderma find so beneficial to their condition. Make that 111 buildings: Sammi has worked closely with the Boorowa RSL sub-branch to include the Clock Tower, which is sure to be a hit with tourists and locals alike.
Sammi has been working very hard to make these events successful and approximately 30 local businesses have kindly donated prizes. Sammi is urging everyone to come along to at least one of the events to help raise funds and awareness, saying “I am wanting to raise awareness for this chronic disease to one day find a cure, so that no person or family can go through the suffering of my family and others experience from this disease.”
One can’t help but feel that Kim Lesslie would be very proud of her wonderful daughter.
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