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Auction to help young family battle on against brain disease

TOUGH RUN: Kylie Willis and partner Daniel Cant with their four children in happier times before complications with Kylie's Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension.
TOUGH RUN: Kylie Willis and partner Daniel Cant with their four children in happier times before complications with Kylie's Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension.

LIFE has been rough for Kylie Willis and her young family as she battles Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension, an incurable brain disease.

It means that a build up of fluid around the 31-year-old's brain has no way of releasing, resulting in chronic and crippling pain and migraines.

This year alone, Kylie has had eight surgeries, six of which were on her brain, after complications with a brain implant to help manage the disease.

Partner Daniel Cant said the last year had taken a big toll on the family - the couple have four children between them and Kylie's family live in New Zealand.

"Every couple of weeks we were down in Brisbane battling with doctors until they finally agreed they would have a look at the implant and replace anything that wasn't working properly.”

Doctors discovered all three tubes of the implant were blocked.

During surgery Kylie suffered a brain haemorrhage, sending her body into shock resulting in dozens of severe seizures and leaving her in ICU on life support.

"At the start, I was trying to juggle work and travelling to Brisbane and back every night after work - I used up all of my leave, purchased another two weeks leave I've got to pay off, and I'm taking unpaid leave,” Daniel said.

Born in New Zealand, Kylie isn't entitled to any financial assistance and was stripped of her driver licence due to her condition.

"She feels what has happened has taken everything away from her, she is emotionally shattered,” Daniel said.

Despite all the challenges, their friends have watched the family battle on and now they want to help, hosting an auction and family fun day to raise money.

Long time friend Kylie Healey hopes the fundraiser will relieve some of the financial burden for the family.

"As a mum myself, seeing what she's going through and watching her strength trying to get through it has been amazing - she's not a person to ask for help,” she said.

"The whole idea was to raise money to support Kylie while she's not working.”

Businesses across the island have donated items to be auctioned off, including a $400 voucher from Bribie Tattoos, a full day barbecue boat hire from Bribie Island Boat Hire, and a four-wheel-drive tour.

There will be live music, raffles, a photo booth, and face painting for the kids.

To put in a bid, head down to Blue Pacific Hotel on April 30 from 12pm.


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