Walking for a top cause

Jamahl Waddington and daughter Gabby
Jamahl Waddington and daughter Gabby Contributed

DETERMINATION to raise awareness about a rare disease affecting his daughter will take a Coffs Coast man and his mate on a 240km walk from Coffs Harbour to Byron Bay.

Local residents Jamahl Waddington and Ashley Lane are aiming to raise $20,000 for the Captain Courageous Foundation when they embark on the mission on April 17.

The Captain Courageous Foundation supports people diagnosed with a rare blood disease known as Diamond Blackfan Anaemia - a disorder of the bone marrow affecting around 800 people worldwide.

It's a cause close to the heart for Jamahl, whose daughter Gabby requires monthly blood transfusions having been diagnosed with the disease in 2003.

"Whilst Gabrielle appears on the outside to be a beautiful vibrant young girl, she lives with DBA daily," Jamahl said.

"She has monthly blood transfusions to stay alive, hundreds over her lifetime so far and has had more trips to ICU than most people have set foot in a hospital."

Gabby was diagnosed with the disease after her twin sister Jasmine died in 2013 from pneumococcal infection.

Jamahl said Gabby was rushed to hospital with what was feared to be a similar life threatening infection.

"We've held her many times as doctors have told us that she may not last the night, but she's here today," Jamahl said.

"She is a confident, beautiful young girl and has defied the most enormous odds."

Money raised for Captain Courageous has meant patient clinical trials of a new drug are a possibility this year.

This drug could provide not only treatment for DBA but also for other blood diseases such as leukaemia.

Jamahl said the charity walk was about raising awareness to help find a cure.

"Whilst it sounded like a good idea at the time, walking along beach sand, up and down cliffs and through national parks for seven days will no doubt be challenging," he said.

"Nevertheless, we are determined to complete the walk in seen days, determined to raise more than $20,000 for Captain Courageous and determined to play our part in finding a cure for DBA.

"This is our gift for Gab"

To donate to the cause, visit

Investigation into Matthew Mitchell's death gets renewed

INVESTIGATION RENEWED: Peter Mitchell has renewed calls for the public to help find out what happened to his son Matthew.

Appeal for answers to Matthew Mitchell's death renewed

Block out on solar power caused by red tape

Why a third of Coffs Harbour's population can't access solar power.

Why 33% of Coffs' population of 75,275 people can't access solar

An elegant home, in a coveted location

COASTAL ELEGANCE: This Sapphire beachside home is all about luxury.

The Real Estate Property Guide is online now

Local Partners

Battle for the Ashes in Coffs

What's making news in the Coffs Harbour Council chambers

From little things big things grow

The Coffs Harbour International Buskers and Comedy Festival returns from September 23 to October 1.

Coffs Harbour Buskers and Comedy Festival returns next month.

New developments announced for Curryfest

TASTE TREATS: New developments for Curryfest 2017.

Fresh ideas and developments show no sign of slowing down.

Jemma's bewitching voice

STAGE PRESENCE: Suzie Mathers and Jemma Rix in a scene from Wicked The Musical.

Wicked musical theatre star Jemma Rix has released her debut album.

The two stars who intimidated Chris Hemsworth

HE plays a superhero on the big screen, but Chris Hemsworth has revealed that he was ‘weirdly shaken’ when he met two other big name actors.

Sam Newman: How a Playboy magazine changed everything

The new crew of The Footy Show.Source:Supplied

How a Playboy magazine changed everything.

Leah slams Matty: ‘I was incredibly disappointed’

Leah says she was ‘incredible disappointed’ with Matty J.

BACHELOR evictee's controversial chat with Kyle and Jackie O.

John Eales finds peace with the haka

Inia Maxwell and John Eales in a scene from the documentary John Eales Reveals: The Haka.

Rugby legend is on a quest to learn about a sacred Maori tradition/

The Bachelor recap: Secret pasts publicly exposed

Matty J is left speechless on The Bachelor.

TWO Bachelor contestants’ secret adult pasts have been exposed.

Mother-daughter duo passes Top of the Lake test

Alice Englert, Jane Campion and Nicole Kidman pose for a photograph at the Top of the Lake: China Girl Australian premiere in Sydney.

Alice Englert is a feisty addition to the cast of mum's crime drama.

What's on the big screen this week

Idris Elba in a scene from the movie The Dark Tower.

IDRIS Elba debuts as the Gunslinger in The Dark Tower.

Airbnb, Stayz and co tipped to squeeze Coast housing market

HOLIDAY BOOM: Airbnb letting is putting a further squeeze on long-term rentals.

Councils exploring options to manage the industry

Housing estate is almost a sell out

ACTIVITY: Sapphire Beachfront Estate is almost sold out and a hive of construction activity.

It's taken a while, but these beach-front blocks are almost all gone

Looking for a place to start or downsize to?

Come inside Toormina Real Estate's Pick of the Week

Developer tears up couple's contract for new home

Jade and Edward Roberts were stung by the sunset clause on the first day of their honeymoon.

The developer has the right to do this under the sunset clause