Raffi’s Leukaemia Journey
Raffi is cancer free and has started kindergarten after receiving treatment at The Royal Children's Hospital.
We first met Raffi in 2021, not long after he was diagnosed with b-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia – a diagnosis that devastated his family.
The four-year-old has been going through treatment at The Royal Children’s Hospital since December 2020 and is now thriving – Raffi is leukaemia free and has started kindergarten this year.
Raffi’s parents Matt and Nicole Verrocchi have generously fundraised for the Good Friday Appeal in 2021 and 2022 and have raised almost $270,000 for the Hospital in that time.
Raffi’s mum Nicole said while the diagnosis broke their hearts, the Hospital, and in particular the Kookaburra Cancer Team, instantly provided their family with comfort and support when Raffi commenced his treatment.
Raffi faced many physical and mental challenges during the initial phase of his treatment. He lost his ability to walk, experienced countless hospitalisations and midnight runs to emergency, endured complications associated with an infected port, experienced two anaphylactic reactions and lost his hair.
“Despite all the challenges, The Royal Children’s Hospital provided an environment that allows children like Raffi to face every hurdle with a smile and make the experience as fun an enjoyable as possible. It’s a special place with special people,” Nicole said.
Nicole said the family wanted to fundraise for the Good Friday Appeal to help make a difference to the community of sick kids and their families – a community their family was now a part of.
Raffi’s leukaemia journey will continue, with monthly treatments and hospitalisations until February 2023, and ongoing support from the Hospital after that.
The Good Friday Appeal Team is incredibly grateful to the Verrocchi family and their supporters for their generosity and for helping make a massive difference.
Little superhero’s smile says it all
Thanks to the Royal Children’s Hospital incredible teamwork, Leo has grown into a “resilient, cheeky, part-time musician” who loves his toy instruments, animals, food and swimming.