At the time Sam had 2 young children, Charli who is now 10 and Lukas who is now 4. In the early hours of New Years 2014, baby Tate joined the Gehlken family. Sam and her husband Chris's joy quickly turned to worry as Doctors whisked Tate away for tests. They were informed that Tate had Down Syndrome (Trisomy 21) and a heart condition which would require surgery. They were transferred to the Women's and Children's Hospital so Tate's heart condition could be monitored. It took a month in hospital until Tate was strong enough to go home and thankfully his heart surgery won't be required until he is 3.
Now Sam is no stranger to hospitals, having spent a lot of time there with daughter Charli. Charli has chronic Asthma and is anaphylactic to dairy - she only needs to touch dairy to have a reaction. The family has lost count of how many times Charli has been rushed to hospital and you can only imagine how anxious Sam and Chris are when Charli attends school, birthday parties, etc. Sam has to read EVERY food label as companies regularly change ingredients without public notice.
Sam had to put her business on hold and, as Chris works away, the family had very little time together. Yet with Charli and Tate in and out of hospital for the majority of the year, including Tate the month leading up to the event, Sam still managed to organise the 2014 Dollars and Diamonds Ball. On the 1st of August, 2014 I had the pleasure of attending the ball with a group of friends....and wow, what an inspirational evening!!! Over 400 people in attendance again and $23,000 raised for Foundation 21 supporting Down Syndrome. Tate came home from hospital 2 days after the ball and is now 9mths old.
Sam is the person that does everything to help others less fortunate, expecting nothing in return and accepting graciously her path in life. So whilst she was making her emotional opening speech at the ball - with Tate still in hospital - my friend Amy and I had an idea - we wanted to give something back to this beautiful woman who has given so much of herself to help others.
We decided to fundraise a Thermomix for Sam. Imagine how crucial it is for Sam to control what she feeds her family.....but she certainly doesn't have all day to spend in the kitchen either. And let's face it, with a life-time of medical costs to come, money saving is going to be important. A Thermomix will change not just Sam's life, but also that of Charli and Tate (and of course Chris & Lukas). We have since discovered due to Chris working away and Tate's health, that the family have very few photos of the 5 of them together. So we have also got a local Adelaide photographer Jade on board who is willing to provide a voucher towards a Family photography package at a reduced price.
So please donate to help us raise $2,500 to purchase a Thermomix and a photography package for this beautiful Adelaide family.
Leanne Green & Amy Barnes xox
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