Sharon, Mark, Rhys, Sean and Liam Doherty

Hi John

I wanted to introduce myself. My name is Sharon Doherty, wife to Mark and mother to Rhys, Sean and Liam. I have been wanting to write to you for quite some time, apologies for not emailing you sooner. This year has been very hectic for us.

Firstly, I would like to say thank you to you and the Couee Community for providing the funds for Rhys and I to travel to Avene for treatment. I still recall the day when we found out about this extremely generous donation. We were overwhelmed, excited and very tearful all at the same time. We still feel that way every time we think about it. Words cannot express just how grateful we are with your kindness.

We have been home from Avene for 3 weeks now. For the majority of the time, Rhys’ skin looks pretty good, much better than we have seen it in the last 12 months. All the treatment was based on Avene Thermal Spring Water. The treatment in Avene consisted of hydro-baths, showers, underwater massages, sprays, wraps, thermal spring water compresses and soothing and hydrating treatments. Rhys was scored on his eczema severity on arrival, 10/10 with a result of 7/10 upon completed of treatment. We were a little disappointed with this result but happy to see some improvement. We will take what we can get. We continue to use the Avene products now and they do provide relief to Rhys and improvement to his condition. Our main reason for seeking treatment in Avene was to ensure Rhys was able to get natural treatment for his condition instead of only hard core medication which we have been told on numerous occasions is our only option.

The benefits of Avene were:

  • Rhys is no longer on any medication
  • Rhys’ skin condition has improved
  • Rhys is no longer bandaged 24 hrs a day
  • Rhys has increased energy and appetite
  • Connecting with families in the same/similar situation
  • Tips and tricks gained from Avene workshops

Rhys is still struggling with sleeping issues that are affecting his ability to attend school and lead a normal life. He is also still itching/scratching quite a lot, even though is skin is much better. We believe that this could be related to habit or possibility even steroid withdrawals from some of the medication he was on last year. It is an ongoing battle and we are seeking guidance from counsellors and psychologists on how best to address this. Rhys is still quite ‘down’ and suffering low self-esteem which comes with this sort of condition. We are very keen to get a routine back in place with school, sleep, sport and family time. We are confident we will get there. We are taking it day by day.

We feel very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to take Rhys to Avene for treatment and think that this is highly beneficial to all eczema sufferers (shame it is just not closer to home).

We would be happy to post a formal thank you and have Rhys thank people in person if this opportunity arises.

We cannot thank you enough for giving us this opportunity. Our little family feel very blessed.

Thank you and eternal gratitude

Sharon, Mark, Rhys, Sean and Liam Doherty