April – June 2012

Coen Talks to Neil Mitchell

 Coen’s courage Inspires

INSPIRING. Determined. Brave. These are just some of the words that have been used to describe 14-year-old Coen Ashton. On November 22 last year the title Child of Courage was also bestowed upon him at the Pride of Australia National Ceremony. On that night – which he describes as “awesome” – he also took out the People’s Choice Award for travelling 2000km on a jet ski along the Murray River to raise awareness about organ donation. A worthy and popular recipient, the young cystic fibrosis sufferer continues to wait for a double lung transplant and when well enough, talks about the importance of organ donation. “I still go to hospital every two to three weeks for a week or two,” says Coen, “but when I can I’ve been doing talks through Rotary and I’ve been trying to raise awareness through Transplant Australia and Zaidee’s Rainbow Foundation. I just try to help out where I can and when I can.” Now in its eighth year, Pride of Australia 2012 launched on Sunday. This community initiative aims to focus on Australians who, like Coen, do extraordinary things throughout our communities. They are our family, friends and community members who inspire us through their selfless actions, but whose actions often aren’t recognised. The 10 Pride of Australia categories that you can nominate people for are: Outstanding Bravery, Courage, Heroism, Community Spirit, Child of Courage, Young Leader, Care and Compassion, Inspiration, Environment and Fair Go. At the time of the National Ceremony Coen and his family – parents Mark and Dawn, and brother Kai, 7 – had just moved to Melbourne from Maryborough, to be closer to a hospital. Read the full article 

Ferrets are keeping me alive

LUNG transplant hopeful Coen Ashton credits ferrets for helping keep him alive.

The teen’s pets provide the entertainment and love he needs while he waits for life-saving surgery at The Alfred’s paediatric lung transplant unit.

The animals are banned in his home state of Queensland but he wanted one watching their antics on YouTube. Read the full article 

Pride of Australia Medal 2012: Coen Ashton’s courage inspires us all

INSPIRING, determined, brave – these are just some of the words that have been used to describe 14-year-old Queenslander Coen Ashton. On November 22 last year, the title Child of Courage was also bestowed upon him at the Pride of Australia National Ceremony in Sydney. On that night, which he describes as “awesome”, he also took out the People’s Choice Award for travelling 2000km on a jet ski along the Murray River to raise awareness about organ donation. A worthy and popular recipient, the young cystic fibrosis sufferer continues to wait for a double-lung transplant and, when well enough, continues to talk about the importance of organ donation. “I still go to hospital every two to three weeks for a week or two,” Coen says, “but, when I can, I’ve been doing talks through Rotary and I’ve been trying to raise awareness through Transplant Australia and Zaidee’s Rainbow Foundation. I just try to help out where I can and when I can.” In its eighth year, Pride of Australia 2012 launches today. The awards aim to highlight Australians who, like Coen, do extraordinary things in our communities. They are our family, friends and community members who inspire us through their selfless actions, but whose actions often are not publicly recognised. Read the full article