The Te Whero whānau starred on Maori Television this week thanks to their efforts to raise money and awareness of cystic fibrosis to support to CFNZ and teenager Hayden who lives with CF.
Hayden’s sister Lucinda-Hay Te Whero and other family members took part in Auckland’s Round the Bays and set up a Givealittle Page to support the CF community. Hayden was unable to participate in Round the Bays due to his health but was also interviewed.
The whānau want people to understand Hayden’s condition.
Lucinda-Jay says, “They know (kids) exactly why we are doing it, and they know how Uncle Hayden ended up with cystic fibrosis and they know why he has to breathe with his breathing machines at night”.
Hayden adds, “I want to go give them a big hug and a kiss because I appreciate it so much and how my nephews have done it”.
At birth, Hayden was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. Despite his condition, the 16-year-old still lives life to the fullest.
“I usually do physio twice a day and take medication depending on how sick I am and if I have any infections,” he says.
“CF – Cystic Fibrosis is a genetic disorder with the lungs and digestive system.”
Hayden’s sister Lucinda and her partner, Jordan Tipene, are educating more of their whānau about the disorder.
Tipene says, “My nephew’s name is Isaiah Joseph and he is 9-years-old and he could well be a potential carrier cystic fibrosis and we are teaching him it’s a genetic disorder and you can’t catch it through the air or anything it’s not contagious”.
Many groups joined Round the Bays in support of various topics. But for Hayden who couldn’t be there out of fear of falling ill says it was extra special.
“I like to think about the fun things happening in my day instead of thinking about treatment.”
The Te Whero whānau managed to fundraise over five hundred dollars.