‘MATCH IT’ FOR MADDIE
TO FIND A CURE FOR BONE MARROW FAILURE
Chair of Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision, Nick Riewoldt, St Kilda Football Club forward, Josh Bruce and bone marrow failure patient, Elliot Vanderland announced a $300,000 fundraising target for Maddie’s Match to match government support of an International Travelling Fellowship.
St Kilda and Richmond Football Clubs will come together on Friday 20 July, 2018, at Etihad Stadium for the third time in support of Maddie Riewoldt’s Vision to raise vital funds and awareness for bone marrow failure. The target nominated will equal the Victorian Cancer Agency pledge to co-fund an International Travelling Fellowship research position to find a cure for Bone Marrow Failure. This is the first time such an opportunity has been offered to connect researchers in Australia more strongly to the global network.
Health Minister, Jill Hennessey has witnessed the effects of bone marrow failure syndrome and says, “Maddie’s Vision gives hope to families across Victoria and Australia that one day we will find a cure for this awful disease. We’re proud to be supporting them and families like the Vanderlands in this international collaboration.”
Five year-old patient, Elliot Vanderland returns as the hero of the 2018 Maddie’s Match as he continues his fight with two types of bone marrow failure, Dyskeratosis and Aplastic Anaemia. Since running onto the field with Nick Riewoldt in front of 47,000 attendees at the 2017 Maddie’s Match, Elliot has had two bone marrow transplants, celebrated his fifth birthday in hospital and hasn’t slept at home for over a year (365+ days).
Elliot returned home in April this year and was shortly after rushed back to the Royal Children’s Hospital. He has once again returned to his home and has since been there now for 14 days. His family remain positive but nervous about his health after such a long period of uncertainty and isolation. The Vanderland family faces another challenge also with Elliot’s brother having the same genetic condition and the possibility of needing a bone marrow transplant in the future also.
Nick Riewoldt, says “Elliot is now five years old and still going through so much every day, he is a hero in every sense of the word. The ongoing uncertainty for Elliot, his parents Ian and Elissa and brother Ashton is devastating. We urge everyone to get behind his family and attend this game as a sign of support in a very fragile road for families facing this disease."
St Kilda’s Josh Bruce and the entire St Kilda Football club are proudly representing Maddie’s Match and encourage supporters to fill Etihad Stadium, make a $5 donation at the gate and join the sea of purple, in an initiative to raise awareness and funds for Maddie Riewoldt's Vision. The Saints team once again swapping out the red for a purple stripe.
“I’m really proud to be representing MRV for the Saints this year. I’ve seen the incredible work they’ve done in the area of Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes research over the past few years and am really keen to do my part in raising awareness and funds. On behalf of the whole playing group I really encourage people to buy their Maddie’s Membership and special edition purple Saints merchandise to join with us in turning Etihad Stadium into a sea of purple on 20 July. Help us to empower others to #FightLikeMaddie”
To purchase a Maddie’s Membership, which includes a level one reserve seat to the game against Richmond on Friday 20 July and an exclusive Maddie’s Vision pin, visit www.saintsmembership.com.au or to buy your limited edition 2018 Maddie’s Match merchandise visit Saints Shop MRV. To make a donation to Maddie's Match visit www.mrv.org.au.