Little Sasskiah Gallagher is going to need every bit of fighting spirit that she can muster.
Born 10 weeks ago with three cancers inside her tiny body, the Waubra infant is believed to be the only child in Australia with her condition, and one of only about three children in the world.
One of the tumours is a Wilms tumour, which typically affects the kidneys.
Sasskiah is currently undergoing three different forms of treatment in the Royal Children’s Hospital but there are questions about her conditions that doctors still cannot answer.
With her parents Matt and Jess split between running the family farm in Waubra, being with Sasskiah in the Royal Children’s Hospital and caring for their five-year-old son Jax, the town has come together to support the family.
Friend and neighbour Laura Molloy is coordinating what started as a clearing sale but has morphed into a giant auction of goods and services.
“The community wanted to do something because the Gallagher family at Waubra are very much community-minded and have been in the area forever. People were saying ‘what can we do?’ and that’s how the fundraiser came about,” Ms Molloy said.
Tens of thousands of dollars worth of goods have been donated for the auction at the Waubra football ground on Friday night.
Among the auction highlights are a large steer, donated by a local farmer, and an eight-week-old red heeler pup ready to go to its new home and train to become a working dog.
There’s also electrical installation of a split system, installation of lights and fans, four blokes happy to do a day’s farm or building labour, hay and grain, a truck or trailer load of quarry rock, stock cartage, a truckload of drinking water, firewood and accommodation down to more regular raffle items like meat trays, vouchers and Tupperware.
Four tickets to The Project with a meet and greet with host Gorgi Coghlan are also up for grabs.
“This is a chance for our wonderful community to come together and support a well-known, loved and respected family through this hard time,” she said.
“This is a typical small community that gets together to help and support Matt and Jess. Matt would be one of the first people to step up if someone else needed help.”
It’s not the first time the family has made headlines, with the couple meeting after appearing on reality television programs – Matt on Farmer Wants a Wife and Jess on Beauty and the Geek.
The night will also feature a barbecue, bar, kids’ activities, clothes swap, entertainment and a visit from Santa.
“The response has been overwhelming. I didn’t expect to have as many people being as giving as they have been,” she said.
“I’m just happy to get as many people as possible along because the money will go toward follow up treatment for Sasskiah and the Royal Children’s Hospital.”
The auction fundraiser will take place at Waubra football ground from 6pm on December 7.