Sensory room at Whitsundays resort to help children with autism enjoy family holidays


Going on holidays was seldom relaxing for Gail Watts.

The shake-up of routine, busy environments and sudden absence of all things familiar was highly stressful for her son, Reilly, who lived with Asperger’s Syndrome.

Ms Watts, a special education teacher from Ballarat in Victoria, said families with children on the autism spectrum often opted to stay at home because it was easier than going on a holiday.

Hoping to change that, she is campaigning for more inclusive holiday settings through an initiative in honour of her son.

Reilly was aslo diagnosed with epilepsy and passed away in 2018 aged 23 after a suspected seizure.

“It was sudden and unexpected, and it just rocked our world,” Ms Watts said.

A holiday park in the Whitsundays this week opened a sensory room designed by Ms Watts as part of the Reilly Room Project.

The space has been decked out with features including a hammock, weighted blankets, and activities specifically designed to calm children with autism who may be feeling overwhelmed.

“What they really need is a room that’s quiet and somewhere they can occupy themselves … and block out the anxiety of their world being out of kilter while they’re on holiday,” Ms Watts said.

The Big4 Adventure Whitsunday Resort is the fourth holiday park in Australia to incorporate a Reilly Room, and the first in Queensland.

“[Holidays are about] creating those great memories to live on forever,” resort owner Greg McKinnon said.

Whitsunday Regional Councillor Jan Clifford said there was huge potential for the tourism region to become more inclusive.

“I sincerely hope this spreads to other properties and other organisations,” she said.

Ms Watts said she believed positive change was happening in the sector.

“It’s a wonderful time to be involved in this kind of thing.”

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Keilor East home invasion with Melbourne family inside caught on CCTV


The terrifying moment a group of men used a sledgehammer to break into a Melbourne home as a family slept inside has been caught on CCTV.

On December 18 around 3.25am, a man is believed to have used a sledgehammer to force entry into the house on Nicola Court in Keilor East.

Two other men were with him and were armed with a tomahawk and a semi-automatic firearm.

A 44-year-old man and woman as well as their two young children were asleep inside.

Confronting CCTV footage from outside the front door shows the men smashing into the front door and screaming can be heard shortly after.

A male resident was then pushed to the ground and punched in the head.

The home invaders made demands for a number of items and stole more than $40,000 worth of property as well as the victim’s grey Audi sedan.

The vehicle, with the registration AWH013, was last seen travelling in a convoy with a white Dodge station wagon believed to have been stolen in a separate incident.

Victoria released the CCTV of the three men they believe can assist with the investigation on Friday.

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Eight-year-old Monty lives with a rare disease. Here’s what his family want you to know


Monty Hui has long dreamed about swimming in his school swimming carnival.  

 

But for an eight-year-old boy living with pontocerebellar hypoplasia, a rare disease that affects the development of the brain, it was no easy task.  

 

“He had to have speech therapy to learn to close his mouth and to blow bubbles,” his mother Jess Hui told SBS News. “That was before he even went in the pool. But he was so committed to that goal.”  

 

Monty recently achieved this goal, and says next year he hopes to swim again without a noodle.  

 

For Ms Hui and her husband, Danny, the uncertainty of having a child living with a rare disease wasn’t eased by the diagnosis.  

 

“It was a scary time. At the time they were trying to rule out a lot of things that it might be. Even having a diagnosis of pontocerebellar hypoplasia – it helped in some ways to have a name for it, but that uncertainty of what will come next,” Ms Hui said.  

 

The Hui family.

SBS News

 

Approximately eight per cent of Australians live with a rare disease – around two million people in the country.  

 

But they can often go misdiagnosed or undiagnosed, and are unable to get treatment due to a lack of awareness about the conditions.  

 

This Rare Disease Day, Nicole Millis CEO of Rare Voices Australia, an advocacy group, is calling for more awareness among governments, policy makers and the broader community.  

 

“Our health system isn’t geared for rare diseases,” she told SBS News. “It works really well for diseases that are common. But for rare diseases it can be quite tricky and overwhelming.”

 

“I think one of the hardest things about rare disease is you are constantly living with uncertainty. Often when you are diagnosed you haven’t heard of it, and your doctors haven’t heard of it as well.

 

“It’s really quite overwhelming. You don’t know who to go and see, you don’t know what to do.”

 

 

Ms Millis, who herself is a parent of a child with a rare disease, says finding and building a sense of community among those with rare diseases is a hugely important step.  

 

“It’s common for people to go years and years without a diagnosis. It’s really important to get a diagnosis. It’s important to get treatment, but also so you can connect with other people who have similar or the same disease to get a sense of community, because living with a rare disease can be really isolating,” she said.  

 

There are around 7,000 different diseases commonly called rare diseases. Ms Millis says while the symptoms often vary greatly, many of the experiences of those living with rare diseases – such as misdiagnosis and having to explain your condition all the time – are the same.  

 

“When you live with a rare disease you are learning all the time, but also educating others all the time,” she said.  

 

 

Associate Professor Kim Hemsley is a research scientist at Flinders University looking at Sanfilippo syndrome, a rare genetic condition that causes fatal brain damage and is a type of childhood dementia.  

 

Professor Hemsley said while the condition is rare childhood dementia affects around one in 2,800 babies. Those with Sanfilippo syndrome, which is currently untreatable, rarely live to adulthood.  

 

“Given the devastating nature of the disorders, it’s absolutely imperative that the research on these conditions is better funded and there is greater awareness of the impact of rare conditions on families and society,” she said.

  

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Family of legendary broadcaster Ray Warren plea for return of stolen Hall of Fame ring after ‘disturbing’ home invasion


Warren’s daughter Holly and her son were at home at the time of the intrusion while Ray and his wife Cher were upstairs asleep. Nobody was hurt in the incident and NSW Police are investigating.

“I also feel a sense of helplessness, that this scum, could take a treasured family piece Dad’s @nrl Hall Of Fame Ring that night, so special on so many levels to us,” Mark posted on Instagram.

The voice of rugby league Ray Warren at his Hall of Fame induction.Credit:Getty

“Very hurt and disturbed but to these cowards please know that with all our combined networks, all areas, along with the @nswpolice & @nrl the focus will come your way.

“Be assured of one certainty, that Karma comes with gravity when you knock on our family door. Mostly though, thank you my Lord our family were not harmed.”

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Warren is due to return to the commentary box for the opening round of the NRL season next week and admitted after last year’s end-of-season State of Origin series he wasn’t sure if he had called his last match.

He broadcast Queensland’s series-deciding victory from the Nine Entertainment Co studios after being unable to secure a permit to travel to Brisbane for the Suncorp Stadium showdown.

More to come

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CHILLAX family meditation and relaxation


Date & time
Sun 28 Feb 2021
3:00pm to 4:00pm

Age

All ages. Children require parent/guardian supervision.

Cost

Free

For a calm mind, creative thinking, mental clarity, alertness and overall physical well-being. A great start to your week!

Bookings

No bookings required. For more information phone Deanna from Yoga Mind Body Brisbane on 0401 247 328.

Requirements

Yoga mat and towel.

Meeting point

Meet at Daphne Fancutt Amphitheatre (opposite QLD Tennis Centre).

Venue

Ken Fletcher Park, 167 King Arthur Terrace, Tennyson

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Family stands by 82-year-old accused of killing wife


Mr Beever’s lawyer, Jonathan Nyst of Nyst Legal, released a statement on Friday on behalf of the family.

“Robyn and Max met when they were just 20 years old, and they have been together as a loving couple ever since, for more than 60 years,” it said.

“They were devoted to each other and, in their later years, the primary concern of each of them very obviously was the welfare of the other.

“Naturally, their family has been absolutely devastated by this entirely unexpected and deeply tragic turn of events, and in particular the awful loss of their mother.”

The statement said Mr Beever had “unwavering love and support” from his family.

“But their greatest concern now is for their aged father, who is not in good health, and has not been for a number of years,” it said.

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“They sincerely thank all those who have expressed their sympathy and support in this time of shock and grief, but ask that the press and the public now respect their privacy to allow them to absorb and cope with the enormity of this unfolding tragedy.”

Mr Beever’s matter was heard in Southport Magistrates Court on Friday.

Detective Inspector Chris Ahearn on Friday said Mr Beever was “certainly in a distressed state” and denied to be interviewed by police.

“He’s in hospital undergoing further testing. He doesn’t have any significant injuries,” he said.

Inspector Ahearn would not be drawn on whether Mr Beever’s injuries were self-inflicted, and said dementia was “one of the propositions” to be investigated.

“We’re going to have to get the toxicology report and that will give us a clear picture on what might have gone on there,” he said.

“It’s very difficult to see people of this age, one murdered and [one] facing the court for such an offence.”

Inspector Ahearn said detectives were investigating the motive to the attack.

If you or someone you know needs help or support, contact DV Connect on 1800 811 811, 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732, or the Brisbane Domestic Violence Service on 07 3217 2544.

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Family take legal action against hospital after six-year-old dies from croup



At just six years of age, Victorian boy Emmett Gage had his life cut short by croup – a common respiratory complaint in children.

Emmett died in June 2019, less than 24 hours after being discharged from a leading Melbourne hospital.

Emmett’s distraught mother Alex and grandmother Tina from Kilmore, north of Melbourne, are now speaking out about the tragedy.


“I lived for Emmett, he was my world, and now everything has been been turned upside down,” Alex Gage told 9News.
Around midnight on June 1st, 2019 Emmett, who also had autism and other respiratory problems, went to the Emergency Department of the Royal Children’s Hospital.
He was suffering the tell-tale symptoms of croup – a barking cough and breathing difficulties.
“He had a slight tinge of blue around his lips and he wasn’t right … he was very clammy and clingy to us,” said Ms Gage.
After a few hours of monitoring in the Emergency Department medical staff gave Emmett some more powerful medication to help his breathing.
According to the family around an hour later – just before 5am – medical staff advised them Emmett was well enough to go home and he was discharged.

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Family yoga


Date & time
Sat 27 Feb 2021
7:30am to 8:30am

Age

All ages

Cost

Free

Family Yoga classes are play-based active learning and are suitable for families to connect, learn and grow together. Yoga is a wonderful activity to guide you into a calm state. Using themed classes we move our bodies in a fun way, enjoying different poses and interactive group activities.

Bookings

No bookings required. For more information email Marjorie at Gardiner Yoga & Wellness for Families 

Requirements

Bring a Yoga mat and towel..

Meeting point

Meet near the gym equipment

Venue

Carindale Recreation Reserve, 27 Cadogan Street, Carindale

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A&H weekend family fun



Sunday, February 28, 2021, 3 – 4pm

A&H weekend family fun

Bring the family along and be active together in our fun group based fitness session. You CAN prioritise yourself as well as the kids and everyone can have fun while being active in this energetic game based workout. Suitable for all fitness levels and ages.

Runs 4th Sunday of the Month from 5 September 2020 – 27 March 2021.

Venue: Abbott Park
Address: Abbott Park, Woodlands Way, Parkwood Qld
Suburb: Parkwood
Bookings required: Yes
Category: Active families
Contact name: Gecko Sports
Contact phone: 0419 777 689
Cost: Free
More info: geckosports.com.au

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Free Family Fun Day


Moorooka Nissan

To celebrate the arrival of the all-new Nissan Navara, Moorooka Nissan are hosting a FREE Family Fun Launch Day,  perfect for the ultimate cost-free family day out on Saturday March 6, 2021.

So bring the family down to Moorooka Nissan, located on the ‘Magic Mile’ at 917 Ipswich Road, Moorooka, from 9am on Saturday, 6th March to celebrate this exciting launch! This is a day you won’t want to miss!

Thank you for checking out this article on “What’s On in the City of Brisbane” titled “Free Family Fun Day
“. This news release was brought to you by My Local Pages Australia as part of our QLD events and what’s on news services.

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