Media release – 12 October 2010

The popular Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk, located in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales with breathtaking views of the Illawarra Escarpment, will next month play host to a special 24 hour charity event to raise money for children with cancer. It will be the first time a tree top walk in Australia has been open for 24 hours straight.

Illawarra Fly’s General Manager, Sean Haylan, came up with the innovative idea along with several other business and community leaders, who were keen to do more for kids with cancer in the Illawarra region. It’s a cause very close to Sean’s heart after watching his own daughter, Jessica, suffer with cancer.

“ At 14 months old Jessica was diagnosed with cancer.  Subjected to operations and seven months of chemotherapy, she went into remission but unfortunately was affected again when she was four. Further operations and chemo for several years took her into remission, and at age 11 she was considered ‘officially cured’,” said Illawarra Fly General Manager, Sean Haylan.

“We are extremely lucky but I know all too well the difficulties families of children with cancer face, and the hardships of travelling from regional areas for treatment,” he continued.

Appropriately titled ‘Rise Above’, the event will take the form of a 24 hour charity walk along the famous Illawarra Fly Treetop Walk, a 500 metre walk in the treetop canopy, some 20-30 metres above the ground, on November 5 and 6. The walk will raise money for children with cancer from the Illawarra region through the University of Wollongong’s new initiative, Southern Children’s Care, which aims to acquire equipment, resources and facilities.

“I’d encourage people to get on board by raising money, taking part in the walk or making a donation via the website,” Sean concluded.

For more information on Illawarra Fly and the Rise Above 4 Local Cancer Kids Charity Walk, or to make a donation go to www.illawarrafly.com or www.riseabove.com.au

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