Make Your New Year's Resolution Count - write a Will for free and help sick kids like Aria

13 December 2023 | Expected time to read: 5 minutes

The promise of a new year inspires us to reflect upon the things that matter most in our lives, our families, friends and loved ones and our hopes and dreams for the year ahead.

As you start to contemplate your plans for next year, I encourage you to think beyond the next 12 months. Consider your future hopes and dreams and the impact you wish to make well into the future. Consider helping us look after tomorrow’s children, ensuring they have access to the best healthcare possible, whenever and wherever they need it.

Make Your New Year's Resolution Count and consider leaving a gift in your Will to SCHF.

Your gift will help kids like Aria whose life was saved thanks to supporters like you.

Amy was only 24 weeks pregnant when she was told she would need to deliver her baby. After suffering severe pre-eclampsia, it was the best option to save both of their lives

Her baby girl, Aria, was born weighing 493 grams, less than a bag of sugar, and was so small she could be held in the palm of one hand.

Aria was born with short gut syndrome, and without fully connected and working intestines. Her condition means that she is unable to absorb nutrients as quickly or well as a healthy baby. For Aria, this caused several complications, including dilated bowels and a distended stomach, making her more susceptible to bacterial overgrowth in her bowels.

(Mum Amy nurses baby Aria with Dad Kalle in the Grace Centre).

(Mum Amy nurses baby Aria with Dad Kalle in the Grace Centre).

At just six days old, Aria was transferred by the Newborn & paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS) from the family’s local hospital to The Children’s Hospital at Westmead’s (CHW) Grace Centre for Newborn Intensive Care, which provides highly specialised and personalised care for the state’s sickest babies.

Transferring a baby as little and fragile as Aria requires an incredibly skilled team and highly specialised equipment. The NETS team were able to provide this vital support to Aria and transfer her to CHW safely to get the specialist care she needed.

“The NETS team were just amazing. They told us Aria was in the best hands possible and rang us as soon as they got to Westmead to let us know everything was ok. We can’t thank them enough,” Amy, Aria’s mum, said.

Aria had her first surgery at eight days old to connect her bowels together and was the smallest patient her surgeon, Dr Erik La Hei, Acting Head of Burns and Staff Specialist at CHW had operated on in 20 years. Aria spent the next two months in the Grace Centre, before being moved to the Clancy Ward to continue her recovery.

Throughout Aria’s journey, she was supported by large multidisciplinary teams who worked together to provide the best possible clinical care for babies like Aria.

Dad Halle smiles down at baby Aria in an armed chai

(Dad Kalle smiles down at baby Aria in an armed chair).

“The nurses at both The Grace Centre and the Clancy Ward provided absolutely phenomenal care. They really went above and beyond to make it feel like you weren't in a hospital,” Amy said.

For 237 days while Aria was in hospital, Amy and her husband Kalle made it their mission to celebrate every moment - when she reached the size of a forearm, when she was able to fit into baby clothes, and when she finally reached full-term baby weight. At seven months of age, Aria had reached a weight of 4.1kg, over eight times the size she was when she was born and was meeting all her developmental milestones thanks to the exceptional care she had received.

“It was a surreal moment when we finally left hospital. It was such a massive accomplishment, but it also felt like we were leaving behind our extended family at the hospital, all of whom were invested in Aria's success,” Kalle said.

To continue supporting kids like Aria, we invite you to join a unique group of people who have committed to leaving a gift in their Will to SCHF. Even as little as 1%, can make a big difference to the future of sick kids and help them live their healthiest lives. Because what kids want more than anything when they grow up … is just to grow up...

SCHF has partnered with Safewill, Australia's most trusted online Will writing platform. Safewill makes it quick, easy and affordable to write your Will online.

For a limited time only, from 28 Dec 2023 – 31 Jan 2024, you can write your Will online for free (saving $180) with Safewill. To redeem this offer, complete your Will by 31 January 2024.

At SCHF, we know that including a charity in your Will is a very personal decision. It’s an important and lasting declaration of your values and beliefs that you and your loved ones can be proud of for a long time to come. Thank you for considering.

If you have any questions or for more information, please contact our friendly Planned Giving Team on 1800 770 122 or or visit our website to learn more.

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