News from Heartfelt Homes

Blog 2017-10-16T11:14:16+10:00

Happy New Year hopes dashed with the phone call every mother dreads.

Some people crumble when life deals them a tough hand. Others handle whatever's thrown at them with positivity, strength, and confidence. Blue Haven mum, Diane, is the epitome of the latter and a walking talking example of how such a positive attitude extends to benefit others. 2017 was a rough year for this beautiful lady and her family. With son, Hayden battling a rare medical condition at their home on the Central Coast, Diane has had to give up work to give her much-loved offspring the round-the-clock care he needs. Traumatic enough for even the most resilient, but Diane keeps going, taking it all in her maternal stride. As the dawn of the New Year broke, Diane already knew that 2018 was going to be a tough year for

THANK YOU from happy little chappy, Samuel.

Seven-month-old Samuel has a rare congenital lung malformation and just before Christmas he had an operation at The Children's Hospital at Westmead over 7 hours away from his Coonamble home. While Samuel recovered, with thanks to Heartfelt Homes donors, we were able to provide accommodation for Sam's mum and dad at 175 Hotels and Apartments, 300 metres away from the hospital. Without this support, the family would have been separated causing further distress to both Sam and his parents. Samuel recovered amazingly from his surgery but unfortunately his lung started to collapse when they were on their way home from the operation and the family only made it as far as Bathurst before Sam had to be airlifted back to Westmead. THANK YOU to our donors from Samuel and his mum

January 10th, 2018|All|0 Comments

Childhood cancer is a journey, not a destination.

Childhood cancer. The fear that every parent silently harbours from the moment of conception until the end of time. Never in their wildest nightmares could a parent fathom what it means for their beautiful child to face aggressive chemotherapy as their school-friends sit their end of year exams. But, from the moment 13-year-old Teagan Ferguson's was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia on December 12, 2015, that became the reality for The Fergusons. While such an unforgiving diagnosis would be traumatic enough for any family to face, Teagan's treatment was only available at The Children's Hospital at Westmead. Over four hours away from their home in Wongarbon, regional New South Wales. For months on end, the family was away from their immediate and extended family, from Teagan's school-friends, and from

January 8th, 2018|All|0 Comments

“There’s been an accident.” Mother-of-three, Fiona MacAnally, no stranger to medical crisis far away from home.

When you meet Heartfelt Homes’ Managing Director, Fiona MacAnally, you can't help but warm to her bubbly personality and  compassionate nature. As a self-confessed wearer of her heart on her sleeve, it will only take you a short time to realise that Fiona cares. Genuinely.   Fiona MacAnally, Managing Director - Heartfelt Homes, 2017. As mum to three active boys now in their twenties, and wife to cycling-fanatic, Gus; Fiona is no stranger to picking up the phone and hearing those heart-stopping words, "there's been an accident." One Saturday morning in 2013, Gus was out on a road bike ride when he was hit by a car travelling at speed and flung from his bike breaking his back in several places. As a self-employed acupuncturist, his income stopped immediately

Meet the Osbornes: Family from Bathurst endures medical crisis at Westmead.

If ever there's a family's story that will remind you to count your blessings as you go to sleep tonight, it's the Osbornes. Just over 12 months ago in October 2016, 15-year-old Scott, a very sporty and active teenager, was diagnosed with Myelodysplasia Syndrome with Monosomy 7, or MDS. To you and me, we know that diagnosis doesn't sound good. But, as you move on with your day, swipe to the next story in your news feed, let me tell you what that diagnosis actually means to this beautiful family from Bathurst, New South Wales. To the Osbornes, a family which lives over 2.5 hours away from The Children's Hospital at Westmead where Scott's urgent treatment was required, his familiar life changed immediately. His diagnosis meant that Scott needed

Stone and Wood providing valuable support for Heartfelt Homes.

The moment you meet the team at Stone and Wood, Byron Bay, you know you're in the presence of a company with heart. Not only do the original brewers of the Northern Rivers provide a range of deliciously unique lagers and ales currently sold in bottle shops and bars across Australia; with their company ethos firmly rooted in their local community, their day-to-day impact far exceeds bottles of - albeit superior - beer. Stone and Wood is dedicated to giving back to the local community which helped them achieve the success story they can tell today. Every month, the popular brewing company, which quickly became a household brand after their establishment in 2008, chooses a local, grassroots charity to support through their Ingrained Program. During the month, 100% of

November 18th, 2017|All, Blog, Fundraising, General, Heartfelt Help|0 Comments

Family from Rutherford, NSW, facing serious medical crisis 160 kilometres from home.

Imagine. As you prepare dinner for the family tonight or kiss your kids' goodbye as they rush out the door to school; imagine that life doesn't go as you planned today. Imagine that instead of working your way through your to-do list as most of us do every day, imagine you find yourself dropping everything and rushing to a hospital 160 km away as your 11-year-old daughter's kidneys start to fail. Imagine you must drive over two hours as your precious child's life hangs in the balance. You had no way of ever knowing you'd need to prepare for this on a day that started like any other. Because, as you imagine what - for most of us - would be our worst nightmare, this is the reality for

Brave Aileen thanks HEARTFELT HOMES donors for helping her family stay by her side.

You may remember that recently a very special lady was introduced to the Heartfelt Homes family. Aileen Rowe has battled cancer since 2013 and last month she faced major life-changing surgery that would hopefully rid her of the unforgiving illness for good. Aileen lives on the Gold Coast and, with the lengthy operation she needed only available in Sydney, she was faced with at least a four-week stay in The Royal Prince Alfred Hospital away from her friends, family, and Gold Coast home. You can read Aileen's full story here. Since her surgery last month, we're absolutely thrilled to let you all know that Aileen has come through the operation well and is getting stronger and recovering a little more each day. Unfortunately, with jobs to hold down and

September 20th, 2017|All, Blog, Fundraising, General, Heartfelt Help, Hospital Care|0 Comments

Double the community love for Heartfelt Homes!

If you’ve been paying attention, you might know that with thanks to the lovely ladies down at Sienna Byron Bay,  Heartfelt Homes has our very own limited-edition nail polish on sale!! In a bid to help Heartfelt Homes keep families facing medical crisis together at a time they need each other the most, Sienna has created our very own Glitter Bomb Red which looks absolutely stunning. Not only does this gorgeous colour make your nails look great, 100% of profits from every single purchase of Glitter Bomb Red nail polish will be donated to Heartfelt Homes. Looking great, AND making a difference…where do we sign? In a further bid to raise awareness within our immediate community, the legends down at Maggie and Mr Jones Espresso and Wares in Ballina are now

“The cancer’s back”. Worst fear becomes heartbreaking reality for Aileen.

When you've used all the strength you can muster to overcome cancer, there's one thing that even the most positive of survivor fears. Hearing that it's returned. Learning that you must start the fight again. Letting it sink in that the most difficult time of your life is about to be repeated, and your future is, once again, uncertain. But that's the current reality for our beautiful Gold Coast local, Aileen. Aileen was originally diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2013. After the removal of her uterus and ongoing chemotherapy and radiation treatments, she and her family were overjoyed to enter a period or remission believing they could close the door on the traumatic chapter for good. Aileen returned to work, life went back to normal, and everything was going

Cancer patient refuses lifesaving treatment because hospital is too far from home

“Giving is not just about making a donation. It’s about making a difference.” Kathy Calvin.   Imagine one of your parents has just received a diagnosis for cancer.  Their cancer is rare and the local hospital doesn’t have the capability to provide the complex treatment required. Your mum, dad, grand-parent, or whoever it may be, is referred to a larger city facility with more advanced treatment options.  Imagine the family member who’s just received this life-changing diagnosis is a pensioner, they’re financially challenged, and they must travel for five hours to receive this treatment as an outpatient and spend between two and five days away from home every week for the next eight weeks. Imagine that, because they can’t afford accommodation near the hospital, their only practical choice is to refuse the critical

There’s no place like home! Exclusive Heartfelt Homes nail polish released by Sienna Byron Bay.

We're proud to announce a collaboration that our ladies have been waiting for! I've been bursting at the seams to let you know of our most recent collaboration, and now I finally can! Our very own home-grown nail parlour, Sienna Byron Bay, has jumped on board as a valuable support of Heartfelt Homes! And how’s this for awesome, to show their ongoing commitment to helping us keep families facing medical crisis together, they’ve released their very own LIMITED EDITION Heartfelt Homes red nail polish! When you first see the deep red nail polish ingrained with tiny flecks of glitter, you’d be in good company if you flash straight back to the Wizard of Oz and Dorothy’s sparkly red shoes flitting across your screen. Quite apt really, as Dorothy’s most famous

June 26th, 2017|Blog, Fundraising, General, Heartfelt Help|0 Comments

Social workers bridging the gap between Heartfelt Homes and families in need.

When Australian families are going through medical crisis far away from home, it's often the social workers based in the hospitals who’ll recommend Heartfelt Homes to those who need accommodation to stay close to their loved ones. The social workers are an integral cog in the Heartfelt Homes machine, and we couldn’t do what we do without them. They’re on the frontline and work tirelessly to make sure the practical and emotional needs of the patients and their families are met. They give them advice, options, and they pick up the phone and solve some of the family’s immediate problems when they’re going through medical crisis. They make often harrowing situations, that much easier.   The hospital social workers I speak to every day all do such an awesome

June 16th, 2017|All, General, Heartfelt Help, Hospital Care|0 Comments

Seven children – one of whom is critically injured – and just under 100 km away from the nearest hospital. Where would you turn if you were this desperate mum?

“What’s the difference between Heartfelt Homes and Ronald McDonald House?” I know it sounds like the start of a Christmas bonbon joke, but it’s not. That’s actually one of the most common questions I get asked when I tell anyone about Heartfelt Homes. Ronald McDonald House is an awesome organisation that provides purpose-built accommodation to families of children receiving hospital care. And while our services are similar, there are two principal differences between Ronald McDonald House and Heartfelt Homes. The first is that Ronald McDonald House, while providing a valuable support to families with unwell children, don’t extend the service to adult patients. Due to high demand for the valuable service, the tireless work carried out by the staff and volunteers at Ronald McDonald House only extends to the