Kate Diprose bonds with Chiefs
Strength comes in more ways than one which is what cancer battler Kate Diprose showed Chiefs players during their visit to Waikato Hospital.
As part of the campaign, the players selected a coloured pair of shoe laces, which were part of a pack they gifted to each child. The players wore one of the shoe laces on May 27 during their match against the Waratahs in Sydney, and the child kept the other lace. The idea was that the children had a connection with the players they were cheering on during the match.
Kate’s mum Jackie Diprose said Sam Cane gave his lace to Kate, while her sister Jessie was given one by Anton LienertBrown to show his support for the family. ‘‘Kate’s wearing both laces proudly,’’ she said.
Jackie was very appreciative of the ‘‘big hearted’’ Chiefs.
The visit was part of New Zealand Rugby’s diversity campaign. It promoted the idea that no matter your background or physical attributes, you could become involved in the sport. The team members said the day was a great symbol that rugby was a game for everyone, whether you play, volunteer or support and no matter an illness, or who you are.
To support the campaign, Chiefs players wanted to connect with Waikids to show they understood that no one was immune to poor health.
Around 30 players spent the morning with children at Waikato Hospital. Some of the young rugby fans were dealing with diseases such as cancer while others were recovering from surgery.
Chiefs player Lachlan Boshier said it was always good to get out and meet fans, especially the kids.
‘‘All the boys are here and it’s cool to see the reaction you get,’’ he said.
‘‘One of the kids we saw, Liam, he had a season pass so it’s good to show our appreciation to the fans too.’’
Other children in the ward, like Lachlan Takhar, beamed with happiness during the visit. The three-year-old and his brother Jayden Toia-Church, 8, are on the Waikids ward, where they spent time with Chiefs players Toni Pulu and Taleni Seu.
Kate Diprose, center with Same Cane, and her siblings Jessie and Fletcher enjoy the Chiefs’ visit to the Waikids ward.