Country stars shine for Kidney Kids
Despite battling constant pain, Meoghan Craig is determined to live life to the fullest.
The 13-year-old was diagnosed with kidney problems as a baby, which cause recurring infections and unrelenting back pain as well as a host of other problems.
‘‘Because she is always in pain any small thing hurts her more than it normally would for any other person,’’ her mother Julie says.
Her condition means she sometimes misses out on regular teenage activities.
‘‘Meoghan’s cup is always half full and she wants to get out there but sometimes we have to keep her from doing things just because we know the pain will be so bad.’’
The teenager avoids prescribed medication because of the side effects, and instead ‘‘takes some Panadol and just pushes on through’’.
Fortunately for Meoghan, there is another outlet for her enthusiastic spirit.
Charity Kidney Kids holds annual camps for youngsters affected by kidney disorders.
‘‘They have experiences I wouldn’t normally be able to do, like kayaking, archery and they have a massive flying fox,’’ the Mt Albert resident says.
Not only does she get to indulge in fun activities, but being around other kids with similar afflictions helps put her disorder in perspective.
‘‘When I go to the camps I feel lucky that my condition is so mild,’’ she says.
Mrs Craig says the charity not only helps her daughter, but the whole family feel supported.
‘‘When Meoghan goes to camp we all get some respite,’’ she says.
To raise money to continue supporting children and their families Kidney Kids is holding a one-night-only country music concert at the Bruce Mason Centre.
Country music stars Gray Bartlett, Brendan Dugan, Dennis Marsh, Jodi Vaughan and Paul Walden are appearing.
‘‘My lead guitarist has got a wife with kidney problems . . . and so that band all jumped in to get involved to help,’’ platinum award winning musician Dennis Marsh says.
‘‘If I can do anything to help kids, I’ll do it,’’ he says.
Mr Marsh has been in the music business for more than 40 years and has an incredible discography of more than 20 albums under his belt.
He may be best known for his rendition of How Great Thou Art and has recently had his likeness captured on a stamp on Norfolk Island.
Kidney Kids acting chief executive Keith Mackenzie says it is grateful the country stars have given up their time to perform and help raise funds.
‘‘Most New Zealanders don’t realise how prevalent kidney disease is among children and how quickly it can sneak up on families.’’
The charity supports about 1000 Kiwi kids who have kidney disease or urinary tract disorders.
The money raised will help the Kidney Kids team travel to support more families outside of Auckland.
The True Legends concert is on Sunday from 7pm at the Bruce Mason Centre in Takapuna.
True legends: Country music star Dennis Marsh with Meoghan Craig are both looking forward to Kidney Kids’ True Legend concert on Sunday. Go to aucklandcityharbour news.co.nz and click on Latest Edition to watch Dennis Marsh performing