Napier's Danielle Noone enjoys walking as much as she enjoys seeing her little brother Brayden "holding his own" after being diagnosed more than two years ago with a brain tumour.
In just under a fortnight's time, 21-year-old Danielle, who is president of the Hawke's Bay CanTeen committee, will join her 15-year-old sister Laikyn on one of the Napier legs of the fifth annual Mitre 10 Mega Walk - doing their bit to raise awareness and vital funding for CanTeen. All money raised on the walks will go to CanTeen Hawke's Bay which is part of the national organisation which supports young people living with cancer.
"He's good, he's doing okay," she said of her 10-year-old brother, although he was not quite in remission yet despite numerous and extensive treatments for the cancer.
"He goes up to Starship every three months for an MRI head scan," she said, adding that his spirit and attitude was "amazing", and he was just getting on with life like other kids.
The support offered by CanTeen had been a major part of Brayden's strength, she said.
It brought him in contact with other young people with cancer and their siblings who helped make up the CanTeen support family.
Miss Noone joined CanTeen about 15 months ago and was happy to take on the role of heading the committee. "In the 1.5 years I've been with CanTeen people have gone," she said. "There were some I just met once and never got to meet them again. It really hits you."
Events like the Mitre 10 Mega Walk on November 11 were valuable in terms of fundraising and creating extra fun and camaraderie among the members of the Bay group.
"I like walking so I should be okay," Miss Noone said laughing although she admitted a few more practice strolls were in order before embarking on the 6.5km section from Ocean Spa to the finish line at Mitre 10 Mega off Prebensen Drive. Last year more than 1250 people took part in the event.
Kerry Meehan, marketing manager of Mitre 10 Mega, said around $14,000 was raised from the 2011 walk - the money used for a range of activities and its camps which hosted the young battlers.
"The registrations are starting to come in now," she said. "We've got more than 200 at this stage"
People wanting to take part can check over the details and register and pay the entry online at www.megawalk.co.nz
The four walks are the Mega Meander at 3.5km, the MoreFM Short Mega at 6.5km, the Hawke's Bay Today Half Mega 15km run/walk and the 28km Mega run/walk.