Cute, isn’t she? This one has undeniably caught the heart of CEO, Gina Hopkins, and of everyone who has the pleasure of meeting this smiley, happy and friendly bundle of joy!
Have you noticed the oxygen tubes yet? Unfortunately Faith was born premature and spent her first year of her life in hospital, she had to develop enough to stabilise her chronic lung disease and pulmonary hypertension. Although she is now home she has a constant requirement for oxygen therapy, medication and feeding through a tube as well as rehabilitation needs. She regularly spends nights in hospital when her heart rate spikes, due to various reasons, often to over 200 beats per minute!
Faith was lucky enough to be born into a Jiu Jitsu family and community, with both parents active in training and competing. Although needing round the clock care both Kirsty and Clayton have managed to stay active and continue their journey, undoubtedly good respite for the family. It gives them back some of their own time, Faiths’ care could easily have left the parents completely isolated and the consequences of that on someone’s mental and physical health doesn't need to be spelt out. Instead the parents alternated training or left Faith for short periods with the Grandparents in order to go back to the love of the mats and returned refreshed and happier for seeing their Jiu Jitsu family and getting the exercise.
On the days where Faith has joined the class she is, of course, the star of the class and the top student. She intently watches the classes without so much as a whinge, maybe the odd giggle. The only thing this little warrior doesn't like is when everyone stops for a stretch or rest. With the blessing of her mum it is evident even at this young age, Faith will want to help others with disabilities and be involved in charity work … Lets hope this little task master doesn't end up a coach!