Mortlake Dispatch
Adia Herry fundraising for Celebrate T21 book

KOLORA’S Herry family is calling on the local community to support them with a special cause.

Nicola and Rob’s daughter Adia is trying to raise funds for Celebrate T21 for a book set to be published on Australian children, adults and families living with a postnatal or prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.

The seven year-old and her family are set to feature in the book, which contains the stories and pictures of more than 155 families.

Nicola and Rob said they were excited to share Adia’s story as part of the book. 

They said the book would be gifted to families effected by Down syndrome, as part of a gift pack, and would aim to give them comfort and support as well as reassurance in the aftermath of hearing the diagnosis. 

“It’ll try to give them an idea of what life could look like and show them that it is not all doom and gloom,” Nicola said.

“It’ll be given to hospitals, maternity wards, paediatricians and obstetricians as a resource if they have someone who has been diagnosed with pre-natal or post-natal Down syndrome.

“The people involved are from all over Australia and there are many photographers from across the country.”

Adia, a twin and one of Nicola and Rob’s five children, was diagnosed with post-natal Down syndrome 10 days after birth.

Nicola said at the time of Adia’s diagnosis, the couple received minimal information on Down syndrome.

They were given just a handful of articles and websites on the diagnosis which mainly detailed the associated health risks.

Nicola said by sharing their story they hoped to show other families a diagnosis does not prevent children from living fulfilling lives, like Adia who goes to school with her siblings and plays sport.

“We want to be able to give a bit of positivity back and this is a good way to do that,” she said.

“It allows us to get it (positive information) out there as widely as possible to where it needs to be.”

Adia and her family have been unable to hold planned fundraisers due to COVID-19 but are hoping the local community can support their cause by donating locally.

Charity tins can be found in Mortlake at Bates IGA, Macs Hotel, Clarke’s Cafe and the Mortlake Roadhouse, while others are at Terang.

Nicola said donations could also be made online, adding the family greatly appreciated the support of those who had already donated.

The fundraiser aims to cover the publishing costs of the book, with additional proceeds to go towards printing more books to be used as resources for doctors’ offices.

“I think we’ve had $400 donated directly to the online link so far – we only put the tins out in Mortlake last week and there’s also one at Crawley’s Milkbar and the Wheatsheaf Hotel bottleshop but I don’t know how they are doing yet,” Nicola said.

“That’s why I put it on Facebook though; if people know it’s there they might take some coins in when they are going into that shop.”

To donate, either visit one of the listed stores or visit https://celebratet21.com/collections/vic/products/vic-adia-herry?fbclid=IwAR1CUAHjRsJbDKH93DaMsPi0f5S6dYiS89n35YHtLC-wFUZH18ZV4-9Mwig to make a donation online.