Ten brave kids inspire Fremantle Dockers

Ten young children and a number of male and female Fremantle Dockers players and staff stand on a footballe oval
January 12, 2021

The courage and spirit of ten brave young people who received treatment at Fiona Stanley Hospital (FSH) and Rockingham General Hospital (RGH) was recognised at the Fremantle Dockers Football Club’s annual AJ Diamond Club Bravery Awards in December.

The award recipients, Aiyana Rikihana, Emily Smith, Emily Wilson, James Hughes, Lachlan Teape, Oliver Evans, Phoebe Matthews-Williams, Serenity Sorensen, Sophia Wallace and Timothy McGlinn, aged from four to 14, dealt with a range of medical conditions and complications over the last year. They were nominated by their medical teams for the immense bravery they showed during their treatments.

Fremantle’s newest AFL recruits Hayden Young, Caleb Serong, Liam Henry, Leno Thomas and AFLW recruits Mim Strom, Bianca Webb, Emma O’Driscoll, Aine Tighe and Roxy Roux shared the stories of each young award recipient before presenting them with a gold medallion, certificate and gift.

Bianca Webb was inspired by Aiyana, who smiled her way through numerous procedures at FSH. “Aiyana had to go through so much, but she got through it with playdough and glitter and was absolutely amazing,” she said.

“The Bravery Awards were an amazing experience and one for the soul to remember what we go through as kids. Not all of us go through the same thing, so to hear their stories and how brave they are, it’s really touching.”

Hayden Young said he was struck by how positive and upbeat the whole group was at the awards event. “It was special to see the smiles on their faces and how positive they are, considering what they’ve been through,” he said.

“It puts things into perspective. I went through an injury last year and was lucky to have a great support network around me and these kids would have been in and out of the hospital room, which would have been really challenging for them and their families. They get looked after really well through Fiona Stanley Hospital and obviously by their parents, they also have great support behind them.”

Fiona Stanley Fremantle Hospitals Group Executive Director Neil Doverty said the young patients had shown immense bravery, courage and determination during their hospital treatments. “Our staff take great pride in nominating children and young adults for these awards who have been treated at our hospitals as they see first-hand what these kids go through and how they faced up to surgery, pain and being away from home,” he said.

Mr Doverty also acknowledged the families of each award recipient who were in attendance. “The awards are not only about the kids - the mums, dads, siblings and grandparents all deserve recognition as well. Families and carers play such an important role not only during the child’s hospital stay but also their ongoing recovery once they are home,” he said.

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