Article from 2021/2022 Impact of Giving Annual Report
A simple act of kindness can have a big ripple effect. This was certainly the case when eight-year-old Harriett took fundraising into her own hands for a cause close to her family, inspiring a statewide fundraising campaign for kids.
Harriett’s older sister Millie was born with a condition called ichthyosis, a broad group of skin conditions that result in dry, scaling, or peeling skin. Currently there is no precise way to make a diagnosis and there is also no set treatment, which can cause ongoing stress and confusion for families, including Millie’s parents, Ainsley and James Kyder-Gould.
“When our eldest daughter was six weeks old, she was diagnosed with a type of ichthyosis called congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma. We were grateful to know what condition she had, but we fell off a cliff after that. There was no advice on how to manage it, everything was about trial and error,” said Ainsley.
“As so little is known about ichthyosis, we decided that we wanted to support research into the condition to get clarity around diagnosis and treatment paths to help give families a better experience than us,” she added.
Ainsley and James’s set a fundraising goal of $200,000, which will allow researchers at the Melbourne Children’s Campus to investigate the genetic origins of ichthyosis, as well as fund the development of a disease registry.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing lockdowns in Melbourne, the family’s fundraising efforts had been proving difficult. That was until May 2021 when Harriett was inspired to contribute and help others with ichthyosis like her sister.
“I was working from home when Harriett asked me how our fundraising was going, and I was embarrassed to say we were a long way off the goal. Unbeknown to me, Harriett left the conversation and decided she was going to do something about raising money.”
“She asked me to help her put her table outside so she could play in the front yard, and I didn’t think much of it at the time, until I was in a meeting when I heard noise outside. Harriett was yelling, ‘come to the sale, help raise money for ichthyosis’,” said Ainsley.
On her own initiative, Harriett had taken some of her toys, DVDs and CDs and set up a stall at their front gate. Neighbours were drawn over to Harriett’s pop up stall, and many were moved to buy an item or donate when Harriett explained she was fundraising for ichthyosis. In under two hours, she had raised $300 to add to her family’s fundraising total.
“I had DVDs for sale for $2, and people paid $25 for them! Lots of other people just donated,” said Harriett.
After the success of Harriett’s stall, Ainsley wanted to encourage other kids to give back as Harriett did. Together with her business co-founders at The Together Apart, she launched the Kids4Kids Market Day.
The Together Apart and Harriett worked hard to promote the Kids4Kids Market market. Harriett spent a morning visiting 13 classrooms in her local area, handing out over 300 leaflets to promote the market. She shared with all the classes that we want to raise money for Ichthyosis research.
The Kids4Kids Market Day took place on Sunday 27 March 2022 and was a resounding success, with several kids setting up markets all over Melbourne, each with a goal to raise $100.
“Harriett’s own Kids4Kids market raised over $250 going towards Ichthyosis research, and from all the markets on the day, a total of $1,000 was raised towards the cause, which really shows that kids are capable of anything. We want to thank all the kids who worked hard, shared their time and raised money for other kids,” said Ainsley.
“Remember that you can change lives for people with ichthyosis by fundraising,” Harriett added.