Lauren Channon prepares to take part in the Humpty Dumpty Balmoral Burn

Giving back: Lauren Channon. Picture: Simon Bennett
Giving back: Lauren Channon. Picture: Simon Bennett

On her fundraising page for this year's Balmoral Burn, Casula resident Lauren Channon - who is the biggest individual fundraiser in the history of the event - writes any donation big or small will make a difference.

The 14-year-old suggests donating $20 for the 20th Humpty Dumpty Balmoral Burn event on May 29 which will go towards helping the Humpty Dumpty Foundation make a significant difference to those on the frontline and sick kids in hospital by providing life-saving medical equipment.

"Or even $133 which is $1 for every one of my operations," she said.

133 operations? Yes, 133 operations. Her latest - and hopefully last one - came in November. Her first one came when she was just three-days-old after being born with digestive disorders tracheoesophageal fistula and esophageal atreisa, which meant part of her esophagus was missing and has spent most of her life being tube fed.

At the 2019 Balmoral Burn, she raised close to $32,000 and equipment from the funds she raised was donated to CareFlight, Bellinger River District Hospital, Bendigo Hospital and Deniliquin Hospital. She has also donated equipment to the Grace Centre for Newborn Intensive Care at The Children's Hospital at Westmead - the unit that saved her life.

Leading the way: Lauren Channon. Picture: Simon Bennett

Leading the way: Lauren Channon. Picture: Simon Bennett

After a two year COVID-break, the Clancy Catholic College student is back to do it all again. Humpty's first ever Junior Ambassador, will be returning to the Mosman hill this year to take part in the No Burn Walk.

The 420-metre walk up Awaba Street - Sydney's steepest street - is an event like no other.

"The last 100-metres is so hard," said Lauren, who had to battle nerve damage in her legs to take part in the 2019 edition.

"Sometime you want to give up but somehow you keep going and knowing that you're helping children in hospitals gives you motivation to keep on going."

In addition to her Balmoral Burn fundraising, Lauren supports the Humpty Dumpty Foundation's fundraising endeavours in the Northern Territory and has donated several pieces of medical equipment to Gove Hospital and established the 'Teddy Bear Care Project' which provides a teddy bear to each critical baby that uses a Humpty Transport Incubator in the Territory.

"I know better than anybody how important it is for our hospitals to have the very best equipment so that all the sick children in Australia can get better and go home to their families," she said.

"It shouldn't matter where you live in this country, as a child you should access to the kind of equipment that will get you home."

Mum Sue said: "She wouldn't be alive today without the access to the equipment that Humpty has donated to the hospitals she's been at it. She was literally attached to Humpty equipment from the day she was born."

Lauren's Team 2022 is hoping to break the fundraising record they set at the 2019 Balmoral Burn.

  • Humpty Dumpty Balmoral Burn, Sunday, May 29, Awaba Street, Mosman. Details: balmoralburn.com.au.