Meet the little girl who can't go out in the sun
IT'S A hot morning in the middle of summer and five-year-old Monroe Mills is wearing long sleeves, thick tights and an over-sized floppy hat.
Most local kids know the school rule, "no hat no play". For Monroe, the rule is "no bodysuit no play".
Born with a rare form of eczema, (photo-aggravated eczema), and diagnosed with solar urticaria (extreme allergy to the sun), Monroe can't risk go into a room with fluorescent lighting, never mind outside unless she is fully covered. Exposure to direct sunlight quickly causes severe pain, swelling and itchiness.
With no cure on the horizon, Monroe and her mum Sarah Mills are "dealing with it" and the focus this week has been all about getting this five-year-old off to big school.
"School will be such a huge step for Monroe," Sarah said.
"We live in Nambucca Heads but I had trouble enrolling her in a school close to home because they thought she would be a financial burden.
"She is now enrolled at Urunga Public School who have been amazing. They have changed the lights and tinted the windows in her classroom ready for Monroe, all we need now is a new bodysuit."
Monroe needs a full body suit to protect her from super-sensitive skin from ultraviolet light.
"She has been to Second Skin in Newcastle for a complete measure up. I just need to get the money together for two suits which is $5400, even if I can get just one suit I can wash it every night."
As a single mother of three, Sarah is finding it a struggle to raise the funds needed to purchase the suits.
"She is such a bubbly, energetic kid and has been so lonely. School is going to be fantastic for her, although the idea is a bit daunting. I just need to get her that bodysuit."
If you would like to help Monroe get suited up for school, visit the Go Fund Me page 'Amongst The Stars - Miracle for Monroe' to make a credit card donation or donate through any bank to: Monroe Mills, National Bank BSB: 082684, Account: 227612001