ASK Ceri Ovans how far she has come in just 10 weeks since undergoing a lung transplant and she’ll be happy if she can answer with “six kilometres”.
The Guildford resident has set herself a goal of walking 6km at this Sunday’s October 23 Halloween Fun Run, a fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis WA (CFWA).
Just making it to the start line could be considered remarkable for the 28-year-old, who signed up only days after her operation.
“Eight weeks ago when I registered, which was only a few days post-transplant, I didn’t know if I’d be able to do 6km,” she said.
“Six kilometres was something that I knew I could achieve if I pushed myself but I didn’t know how hard it would be, it was just a really good goal to aim towards.”
In a further achievement, she’s also the event’s top fundraiser this year, and has signed up family, friends and colleagues to walk the course with her as part of ‘Team Puffbag’.
For people like Ceri, who was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis (CF) at birth, lung transplants are an eventual inevitability.
However, while transplants can extend and dramatically improve the life of a person with CF, there is still no cure for the genetic disease that affects nearly 4000 Australians. Associations such as CFWA believe it is only a matter of time before medical researchers make the vital breakthrough.
“The run is not only providing me with a fitness goal to work towards but is also assisting with raising awareness for both cystic fibrosis and organ donation,” Ceri said.
CFWA chief executive Nigel Barker said this year’s Halloween theme added further fun to the annual fun run fundraiser, which offers both a 3km and 6km course around Perry Lakes.
“Exercise is critical to CF children’s lives and the Halloween Fun Run is a healthy, fun activity for families to support CF children in their families, schools and communities,” he said.