FOUR-YEAR-OLD Gold Coast twins Matthew and Harry have touched down in France where they will spend the next 21 days receiving potentially life-changing treatment for their debilitating skin and food allergies.
It is the boy’s first of three trips to the Avene Hydrotherapy Centre in France, made entirely possible by generous community donations.
They departed for Avene – renowned for using local spring water to treat eczema sufferers – on Monday along with mum Melanie and their grandmother.
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“It has been a marathon 34 hours of travel, but we did it,” Melanie said.
“Although looking a little flared up by the end, the boy’s have done really well.”
The brother’s were forced to wear a face mask to avoid airborne nut allergies while one airline provided nut salads to its passengers.
“Thankfully, two legs of the journey were made completely nut free in our section of the plane.”
The Gold Coast community has rallied behind the boys’ cause after close family friend Marion Anderson kicked off a community fundraising campaign late last year to help get the boys the treatment they need.
Tens-of-thousands of dollars have so far been raised through raffles, charity events and donations from local businesses and community groups.
The most recent, a $10,000 donation from the Sanctuary Cove Ladies Golf Classic committee which will go towards the boy’s second Avene visit.
“The ongoing support from so many individuals and groups has already changed the life of Matthew and Harry for the better and their treatment will contribute to improving their health and building their skin resilience,” Melanie said.
The brother’s were also treated to a private meet and greet with Irish singing group Celtic Thunder at Jupiters Hotel and Casino earlier this month.
The community day will feature a sausage sizzle, an art auction, jumping castle, competitions, live music and plenty of raffles.
Some of the donated raffle prizes include a nights luxury accommodation, a weekend houseboat escape, teeth whitening package and a three-month gym membership.
If you would like to be involved, offer assistance, wish to donate, or have any questions please contact the Secretary, Hope Island Community Association, via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can donate directly to the boy’s official fundraising cause through their Everyday Hero Account.
For more information on their condition, current situation, and to follow their progess, you can read more on the twin’s community Facebook Page, “Two Little Boys to Avene“.