26 September 2021 | Community

Virgin Australia extends Starlight partnership with AFL Grand Final Wish

26 September 2021: Virgin Australia is today celebrating its renewed partnership with Starlight Children’s Foundation by helping the charity grant the Starlight Wish of 18-year-old cancer survivor, Kyron Dhu, to attend the AFL Grand Final in Perth.

In 2019, Kyron was diagnosed with a rare blood cancer known as Burkitt’s lymphoma, forcing his family to move from their home in Port Hedland to Perth for 6 months while receiving intensive chemotherapy.

Spurred on by the support from his local football club and his passion for the game, Kyron is now a year and a half in remission.

“It’s always been my dream to attend the AFL Grand Final, and I’m just so happy my family, who’ve been such incredible support to me over the past two years, can share in this once-in-a-lifetime experience,” said Kyron who dreams of playing professionally.

As part of his Starlight Wish, Virgin Australia flew Kyron and his family from Port Hedland to Perth, and as the Official Airline of the AFL, arranged for a special Premiership Cup visit, as well as tickets for him and his family to attend the AFL Grand Final.

For the past decade, Virgin Australia has helped Starlight grant more than 2000 life-changing wishes.

Announcing the extension of the partnership, Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said she was proud to work with Starlight to grant hundreds more travel wishes.  

“Together, we share a common commitment to helping young people and their families to experience the excitement of air travel, and by granting more than 200 unforgettable wishes each year, we’re able to ensure that Virgin Australia remains a force for good in the community.

“Kyron’s determination to beat his rare blood cancer is inspiring to everyone at Virgin Australia, and we want this weekend to be a wonderful experience he and his family won’t forget, even if his beloved West Coast Eagles aren’t playing,” said Ms Hrdlicka.

Starlight Children’s Foundation Chief Executive Officer Louise Baxter thanked Virgin Australia for its ongoing support as its official “Wishgranting Partner”.

“We are thrilled to see Starlight’s partnership with Virgin Australia continue with Kyron’s AFL Grand Final Starlight Wish being granted this weekend. This partnership is key to ensuring Starlight can continue to bring joy, laughter and happiness to sick kids when they need it most,” said Mrs Baxter.