| 16°C Dublin


My name is Audrey Whelan and I come from Greenhills, Dublin 12. I work in the Dublin Institute of Technology as a switchboard operator in the IS Department. I am extremely lucky as I love my job and I have lovely colleagues. I have four amazing sisters and the best folks a woman could have. I have four nephews and six nieces, and then, of course, there's the bravest little baby in my life and the reason why I am taking part in the Flora Women's Mini Marathon -- my 14-month-old great-niece Kasey Kelly.

Kasey was diagnosed in November 2011 with a rare and malignant grade-four brain tumour known as an Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid, or ATRT. She has been given a 10pc chance of survival here in Ireland. As a family, we did a lot of research and got in touch with Dr Susan Chi, an ATRT specialist at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston and an expert in treating this type of tumour.

After reviewing Kasey's case, she is willing to give her a treatment that is not available in Ireland, and she has given Kasey a more positive prognosis of 50pc if she undergoes this treatment in Boston. Her treatment is estimated to cost €450,000, along with travel and other expenses. My family and I are currently fundraising for the Kare4Kasey Trust Fund.

Kasey is my niece Michelle's only child and we are determined to make her well again. We are delighted to be doing the Flora Women's Mini Marathon as it is so well known. Lots of women have signed up to do it with us, so it's a fantastic way to raise much-needed funds.

As I am a wheelchair user, having been born with spina bifida, I will be wheeling this marathon. To be honest, I have only started my training, but it is going well so far. Instead of staying in for lunch at work, I am going out and about. Now that the evenings are brighter I go out in the evenings when I get home from work. I have never wheeled 10km before, but am determined to do it for Kasey.


My sisters and all our friends will be joining me on the day and, since we set up and launched a website for Kasey, www.kare4kasey.ie, a lot of ladies have made contact with us through it and they will also be joining us and running or walking for Kasey. With their help, we can get our beautiful little baby the treatment she needs for a long and happy life.

To join the Kare4Kasey team, go to www.kare4kasey.ie or to donate, www.mycharity.ie/charity/kare4kasey