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Local leukaemia fighter to meet his superheroes

Alex Cannan will meet his superheroes at a fundraiser at Specsavers Emerald on Saturday.
Alex Cannan will meet his superheroes at a fundraiser at Specsavers Emerald on Saturday. Contributed

GOOD health is something we often take for granted.

When Specsavers' Emerald retail director Natasha Cannan received the news that her young son, Alex had acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, it was her colleagues and the customers at Specsavers Emerald that supported her through this difficult period. 

To thank the community for its continued support and to celebrate Alex's bravery, Specsavers Emerald will be hosting a fun-filled fundraising event on Saturday, September 9.

Specsavers staff will dress up as Alex's favourite superhero characters and will run family activities throughout the day.

Five-year-old Alex Cannan was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in Feburary last year, a week into starting primary school.

Since his diagnosis, Alex has been receiving treatment at Emerald Hospital and Lady Cilento Children's Hospital.

To coincide with the event, the store is celebrating its support of The Royal Flying Doctor Service, an organisation that provided aeromedical care to Alex when he was first diagnosed with leukaemia.

Using the latest in aviation, medical and communications technology, the RFDS delivers extensive primary health care and 24-hour emergency service to those who live, work and travel throughout Australia.

"We are pleased to be able to support the RFDS as part of the Specsavers Community Program. Having transported Alex to the intensive care unit at Lady Cilento Children's Hospital at a critical time in his diagnosis, the organisation is close to the hearts of the Specsavers Emerald team,” Specsavers Emerald Retail Director Natasha Cannan said.

"We hope that the 12-month collaboration will ensure the RFDS can continue to serve the community of Emerald and treat those in greatest need.”

"We are very grateful for the generosity of Specsavers Emerald for choosing to support the RFDS,” The Royal Flying Doctor Service fundraising executive manager Rob Needham said.

"Raising awareness and valuable funds for the organisation; will help us ensure that we can keep providing professional medical services to patients at critical times. It was a pleasure to meet Alex and we wish him all the best for a speedy recovery.”

In the lead up to the event, Specsavers Emerald is inviting residents to write on the 'super strength' notice board - set up by the store as a way for locals to offer words of encouragement to Alex while he undergoes treatment.

The messages will be read out to Alex when he visits the store on Saturday.

Specsavers Emerald will also run a colouring in competition, giving away cuddly prizes to three lucky winners.

"I would like to say a big thank you to the wonderful residents of Emerald, the medical service providers, as well as my exceptional staff for their ongoing support,” Natasha said.

"I see the fundraiser as a great way to bring the community together, have loads of family fun and raise money for a worthy cause.”

To kick start the store's fundraising efforts, Specsavers Emerald will be donating $5 from every two for one pair purchase to the RFDS, between September 8-9.

In addition to supporting the RFDS, Specsavers Emerald has raised in excess of $1,150 for State Emergency Services over the past three years.


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