Helping hands for Harmony

HER smile has reached the hearts of family, friends and strangers far and wide.

Her story has brought tears to the eyes of many.

After experiencing a sudden stroke at school on 26 February this year, five year-old Harmony Hoskin is improving in leaps and bounds.

This Sunday the Friends of Harmony group will host a Car Show For Harmony to raise awareness and much-needed funds for ongoing medical treatment.

Organisers Barbara Gatt and Natasha Hoekstra, who have rallied behind Harmony’s family, have been working over the past month to get the fundraiser together.

“We go in (to each business) and introduce ourselves and a few of them will be in tears when they find out a little girl has had a stroke,” Ms Hoekstra said.

“Some of them have given massive donations and ongoing support; it’s been amazing.”

More than 90 businesses across Latrobe Valley have donated about $4500 worth of prizes, which will go towards the day’s major raffles and Facebook auctions to follow.

The Gippsland Motors Car Club has jumped on board to organise live music, spinning wheels, jumping castles, face painting and food.

“I don’t think there are words that can actually say how grateful we are,” Ms Gatt said.

“All the food has been donated, all the prizes have been donated; everything.

“This event wouldn’t happen if it wasn’t for the generosity from the people around.”

Harmony spends a few hours at school for a couple of days each week, spending the rest of her time between physio and occupational therapy.

As mothers of Harmony’s closest friends, Ms Gatt and Ms Hoekstra have each witnessed the school students rally behind her, “like mother hens”.

“She’s come so far and that’s with her little fighting spirit,” Ms Hoekstra said.

The pair expects more than 200 cars will show up on the day, with an additional 50 to 100 motorbikes also on display.

Ms Gatt said she hoped to raise up to $10,000, with all proceeds to assist with transport, medical treatment and rehabilitation.

Aside from the ongoing fundraising campaign, Ms Hoekstra said their main message remained the same.

“Kids have strokes, too,” she said.

“Come along for a great, fun day and pray for sunshine.”

To see how you can help the Hoskin family, visit the ‘Friends of Harmony’ page on Facebook.

What: Car Show for Harmony

WhenSunday, 24 May

WhereSt Mary’s Primary School, 50 Monash Road, Newborough

Gates open at 8.30am for entrants at a $5 fee (enter from Balfour Street) and 9.30am for general public with a gold coin donation.

Phone Natasha Hoekstra on 0409 040 700 or Barbara Gatt on 0427 467 979 if you would like to donate your time or resources.