Drought-hit family sells $32,000 bull to help sick children
A DROUGHT-stricken farming family has raised $32,000 for the Children's Hospital Foundation and ongoing research for PLAID syndrome after their home-bred bull went under the hammer on Wednesday.
The Phillips, family of two-year-old Digby Phillips, from Taroom - who was diagnosed with the debilitating condition just before his first birthday - sold their two-year-old, 970kg bull for $32,000 at the 27th annual Hearltland Santa Getrudis Bull Sale at the Roma Saleyards.
Mother Heidi Phillips said she was grateful for everyone's support.
"It's overwhelming to see that there's still so much kindness left in the world," Mrs Phillips said.
"The generosity of the community rallying behind the cause, including the breeders and auctioneers donating their commission back to the fundraiser is simply incredible.
"We hope this money helps other children and other families so they don't have to endure what we had to," Mrs Phillips said.
"It was a really tough time for us, and we wanted to raise money to help find better diagnoses and treatment and hopefully shorten the exposure for other families."
A now-healthy Digby was diagnosed with an auto-inflammatory condition known as PLAID syndrome (Phospholipase-C gamma2 Immune Dysregulation) when he was seven months old.
This meant his body was unable to turn off the inflammatory process, causing multi-system organ inflammation, skin rashes, joint swelling, extreme gastrointestinal upset and periodic fevers.
The funds will be focused on research achieving faster diagnoses, better treatments and ultimately cures for some of the most devastating childhood illnesses and injuries.
Mrs Phillips said she wanted to thank everyone involved.
She thanked Heartland Breeders Association, TopX and PJH Livestock and Property, saying without their combined effort this would have never been possible.
Children's Hospital Foundation CEO Rosie Simpson said the support for Digby and his family's fundraising efforts was heart-warming.
"We are so grateful for the Phillips family and everyone who has got behind their cause," she said.
"Their support will help us continue to fund vital research that achieves faster diagnoses, better treatments and ultimately cures for childhood illnesses, like PLAID syndrome.
"Everything we do for sick and injured kids is made possible by the generosity and support of our donors, partners and the community."