The Riverine Herald - - FRONT PAGE -

APOSTIE bike and 1042 bone shat­ter­ing kilo­me­tres to the fin­ish.

Across the North­ern Ter­ri­tory. From Broome to Ku­nunurra along the Gibb River Rd. That’s Aus­tralian for dust, dirt and cor­ru­ga­tion. En­ter three girls and a com­bined dream to raise money for the chil­dren’s char­ity Bright Blue. Lots of money. The Gibb River Rd ride on your postie bike is not for the faint­hearted even though it is some of Aus­tralia’s most amaz­ing scenery through the Kim­ber­ley – beau­ti­ful creek cross­ings, along un­sealed roads and sleep­ing un­der the stars.

Three girls from Co­huna with steely de­ter­mi­na­tion and freshly ac­quired mo­tor­bike li­cences are keen to give it a crack.

Fiona Stave­nu­iter and sis­ters Renne Hip­well and Car­men Dye just hope it won’t be crack­ing their bones.

Fiona grew up in Co­huna and has al­ways had an ad­ven­tur­ous streak and a de­sire to help oth­ers.

She also has in­cur­able can­cer and has been fight­ing it for the past 18 years.

A huge health scare in 2018 gave her pause for re­flec­tion and ig­nited in her a drive to step out of her com­fort zone and make a dif­fer­ence.

“My last lot of treat­ment for can­cer to the bones and bone mar­row gave me nerve dam­age to my feet and lower right leg,” Fiona said.

“Know­ing the pain, fa­tigue and feel­ings of be­ing un­well I can only imag­ine what it must be like for kids go­ing through sick­ness, so I thought why not jump on board and sup­port Bright Blue,” Fiona said.

She saw the Gibb Rd postie bike chal­lenge and knew she had found what she was look­ing for – an adventure, a chal­lenge and a chance to give back all rolled into one.

She was quick to ask fam­ily friends Re­nee and Car­men to come along and share in the fun.

Re­nee is a work­ing mum and has three chil­dren.

Her youngest child Dotti has kid­ney re­flux and has spent the past three years of her life in and out of hospi­tal.

“Dotti has been sick since she was two. It wasn’t un­til she was di­ag­nosed that we started to get some an­swers and make some head­way with her health.

“The way I look at it is, she has come out of this ex­pe­ri­ence all right in the end, while many oth­ers haven’t and I would like to be able to give some­thing back to help oth­ers who may not be so lucky,” Re­nee said.

She also added watch­ing Fiona’s years of strug­gle with her can­cer bat­tle has also in­spired her.

“Fiona has gone through so much over the years and when she asked if I would come along with her, there was no way I was ever go­ing to say no – although I am a bit ner­vous about spend­ing so many hours on a postie bike and a bloody bumpy road.”

Car­men laughed as she said her par­tic­i­pa­tion was given no choice.

“Re­nee and Fiona just told me I had to come along and that was it – I have ba­si­cally been dragged in to it,” she said.

“Car­men has a beau­ti­ful mind and a gen­er­ous soul who loves her nieces and nephew and works with kids with spe­cial needs so of course she was com­ing with us,” Fiona said.

The Bright Blue Gibb River road postie ride starts on June 7 next year.

It costs $2200 to par­tic­i­pate in the event and each rider must raise at least $5000 as part of their en­try fee.

The money raised goes di­rectly to Bright Blue to sup­port new drug dis­cov­er­ies in child­hood can­cer re­search, works with In­ter­plast to as­sist with sus­tain­able surg­eries for kids in Mon­go­lia and also works along­side Ra­dio Lol­lipop – help­ing to put smiles on the faces of chil­dren when they need them most. To­gether the girls must raise $15,000. Their ma­jor fundraiser is a great fun night at the Leitchville Ho­tel Novem­ber 24.

It kicks off at 7pm and in­cludes live mu­sic by Mark Petersen and a drink and light sup­per on ar­rival.

There will be raf­fles and silent auc­tions held through­out the night.

Tick­ets are $50 and in­clude a chance to win

Rid­ing a postie bike across the Gibb River road to raise money for sick kids while liv­ing with in­cur­able can­cer – and get­ting to do it with great friends – will be an ex­pe­ri­ence of a life­time

the ma­jor prize of $1000.

Sec­ond prize in­cludes two nights’ ac­com­mo­da­tion in a Co­huna Water­front Hol­i­day Park cabin (con­di­tions ap­ply) and third is a great lucky door, but you must be present to col­lect.

A bus will run from Echuca to Leitchville on the night, cost is $20.

“We are re­ally look­ing for­ward to rais­ing as much money as we pos­si­bly can for this great char­ity and we will be do­ing ev­ery­thing we can to reach our goal of rais­ing $15,000.

“Ev­ery lit­tle do­na­tion helps and we re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate your gen­eros­ity in sup­port­ing our cause,” Re­nee said.

They would like to thank Sadie and Co Moorool­bark, Stan­tons In­sur­ance Co­huna and High Moun­tain Wa­ter Kinglake who have jumped on board with spon­sor­ship al­ready – but they are look­ing for more busi­ness sup­port.

While the event is only seven months away, the girls have ob­tained their mo­tor­bike li­censes and will be work­ing on a bit of core strength and fit­ness to help them along the way.

“I am re­ally wor­ried about the fa­tigue – the first leg is 260km so I am not sure how that will go,” Re­nee said.

One thing is for cer­tain, the three of them will be giv­ing it a red hot crack.

“Rid­ing a postie bike across the Gibb River road to raise money for sick kids while liv­ing with in­cur­able can­cer – and get­ting to do it with great friends – will be an ex­pe­ri­ence of a life­time,” Fiona said.

Any­one in­ter­ested in mak­ing a do­na­tion can click on https://gib­briver­ride2019.ev­ery­day­hero. com/au/three-girls-do­ing-it-for-a-cause and for the lat­est in­for­ma­tion check out Facebook Gibb River Road – three girls do­ing it for a cause.

HAVE BIKE, WILL RIDE: Renne Hip­well, Fiona Stave­nu­iter and Car­men Dye with the lit­tle red bike that is go­ing to take them on a very big jour­ney as part of the fundraiser for the chil­dren’s char­ity Bright Blue.

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