BOGGABRI’S Kelly Foran and her son Jake have come through an horrific health-scare experience – and emerged stronger and ready to help others.
In 2003, Mrs Foran had a brain tumour when she was eight months’ pregnant with Jake, her first child.
“I ended up with meningitis and was diabetic and had a stroke,” Mrs Foran said.
A year later, when he was a mere babe in arms, Jake was diagnosed with a cancer called retinoblastoma and lost his eye.
“We were backwards and forwards in the middle of the drought with my son and everything else,” Mrs Foran said.
Many years later and after conducting much research, Mrs Foran and her husband David formed the Friendly Faces Helping Hands Foundation, in January 2011, to help others in a similar situation.
“I’d given it a lot of thought and I started to put stuff into place ... we were looking desperately for some funding to help us start so my husband and I funded the website,” Mrs Foran said.
“We link rural communities to the major hospitals, health facilities and resources within cities.
“We help people get to hospitals and health facilities all over Australia. If you don’t have a computer and are actually on the way to the hospital you can call us on the hotline.”
A morning tea to raise funds for the foundation will be held on Thursday at Narrabri Bowling Club between 10am andnoon.
Sponsored by Narrabri Christian Outreach Centre, the morning tea costs $20 – and someone will win a 30-minute helicopter ride.
“It’s the first one that’s been put on for us by somebody else. We’ve held two fundraisers ourselves, one in March, 2012 and one in November last year. They were art auctions, so they were very different to this,” Mrs Foran said.
“It just helps us get more info on the website and helps other people to man the phones.”
Tamworth Business Chamber is also helping the Forans create a business plan to see if they could get some government funding. The website is: www.friendlyfacesinfo