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From hell and back, North Shore Times, Nov 1997
5 November 1997

Spirited smiles ... Stephen Jones, winner of the 1997 EnergyAustralia Community Spirit.
North Shore Times, Friday, November 1997

From Hell and Back

 
When Brett Jones of North Sydney was born without an immune system because of an extremely rare condition, his family’s life changed forever.
 
In the years since, through many ups and downs which would test the strongest individual, the spirit of his parents, Stephen and Roslyn has remained.

The first four years of Brett’s life were filled with constant pain because he was unlucky enough to be the 20th person in the world diagnosed with Nezelof Syndrome. His hardships were shared to some extent with the rest of his family, including older brother, Scott, and sister, Rebecca, who had to live in an environment of complete isolation.

“It was four years in hell,” Stephen now says.

Brett, now 8 ˝, is a healthy young boy because of a bone marrow transplant made possible through Roslyn offering to be her son’s donor. The operation was a success, but the next three years were still extremely difficult as Brett made slow progress after his disadvantaged start to life.

Stephen Jones’ experience motivated him to begin a fundraising campaign designed to alleviate the suffering of other children in similar predicaments.

He has been achieving remarkable success since he began his Kids Like Brett campaign shortly after the transplant, with donations totalling a staggering $200,000.

His efforts were recognised last week when he won one of Energy Australi’as five Community Spirit Awards. In the same week, Royal North Shore Hospital aslo acknowledged the appeal by adding Brett’s name to its honour board.

In his experience with Brett, he observed kids having to share medical equipment which spread germs, causing patients additional suffering. Stephen decided on a different approach to fundraising, directly purchasing expensive medical equipment fo rreduced rates and donating it to children’s hospitals.
 
North Shore Times, 7 November 1997

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From hell and back, North Shore Times, Nov 1997
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