Life Health & Wellbeing

Tuesday 20 August 2019

'For most people walking 6.5km may be easy, but it's that bit tougher for me' - Teenager living with cystic fibrosis

15-year-old Benat Broderick Cystic Fibrosis advocate and ambassador writes about what he will be doing for Cystic Fibrosis Ireland’s National Fundraising Day – 65 Roses Day.

Benat Broderick
Benat Broderick

Benat Broderick

I have cystic fibrosis which is a genetically inherited disease that primarily affects the lungs and the digestive system. Ireland has the highest incidence of cystic fibrosis in the world – approximately 1 in 19 Irish people are said to 'carry' one copy of the altered gene that causes cystic fibrosis.

This year I decided as a 65 Roses Day Patient Ambassador that I should get out there and do something active, so that’s what I’m going to be doing.

Next week, on April 10th myself and my Mum are going to be doing a 6.5km walk in aid of cystic fibrosis Ireland for the National Awareness Day, 65 Roses Day which takes place on April 12th two days after we undertake the walk. 65 Roses Day is where nationwide volunteers will be out selling purple roses for €2 in raising funds for Cystic Fibrosis Ireland.

For most people walking 6.5km may be easy, but it's that bit tougher for me as I usually tend to get out of breath that bit faster than the average person but as a cystic fibrosis patient I am not going to let CF get in my way from preventing me doing the walk. I am more than ever determined to this, because it’s a charity that is extremely close to me and my heart.

Recently out of a two week period of IV antibiotics in hospital, I had been thinking in hospital on what I could do to raise awareness and after suggestions from the wonderful hospital nurses and staff, I decided to walk 6.5km.

Myself and my mother Caroline will start from our house and we will walk down to Dún Laoghaire East pier, walk it twice and then walk all the way back home. My goal by doing this is to raise over €1,000 which will go towards cystic fibrosis Ireland helping to fund services they provide such as the exercise grants, transplant grants, bereavement grants, counselling and much more.

The overall reaction I have had from my family and friends has been truly amazing, even my teachers in school, they are all very supportive of my decision. 

Benat’s mother Caroline says she and Benat walk together often, and she's extremely proud of her son.

"It’s a great idea and I’m happy to see Benat being so pro-active at only fifteen years old. We are very proud of all his efforts and achievements to date and by doing this it will raise great and much needed awareness. One reason we mainly chose Dún Laoghaire was because the fresh sea air is extremely good for a CF patients’ lungs plus it’s an area, we both frequently walk.’

Anyone who wishes to donate to Benat's fundraising effort can visit here

If you would to directly support 65 Roses Day or get involved on April 12th see www.65rosesday.ie

Online Editors

Editors Choice

Also in Life