For the several months Warners Bay's Emma Blundell was in hospital and confined to her house while undergoing treatment for leukemia, she and her aunty Nicole Gerrard dreamt up ways of making other sick children feel less isolated.
Ms Gerrard, a town planner who has six boys of her own, said her niece spent hours discussing how to create a "play bus" that could visit children who had been discharged from hospital with suppressed immune systems.
"It was an escape for her," Ms Gerrard, of Boolaroo, said.
"Throughout treatment they keep white blood cells down and you can't go to school, shopping centres, or crowded places and parks.
"It felt like we were living in a bubble, and the idea sort of stems from that."
When Emma went to Randwick Hospital in Sydney to undergo a bone marrow transplant, she made her aunty promise the bus would become a reality.
"We didn't know if she was going to make it or not," Ms Gerrard said.
"And here she was worried about helping other kids who were sick like her."
Three years later Emma is now living the life of a "normal little seven-year-old". Ms Gerrard, Emma and her mother Jacki Blundell, are working together to bring the play bus to life.
"We are very lucky Emma is here doing it with us," Ms Gerrard said.
The trio founded "All 4 One; All 4 Love" in July 2017 and began the charity's Bags of Happiness initiative in December last year. The project sees children in the oncology and haematology wards of John Hunter Children's Hospital receive $50 worth of art and craft supplies as well as a $50 gift card.
"It all comes from Emma," Ms Gerrard, the charity's president, said.
"She spent a lot of time immune compromised, and in Sydney she was in complete isolation for six weeks. She got massively into arts and crafts, that's what got her through."
The family has just hosted a Christmas in July event which made $14,000 to continue the Bags of Happiness project.
Ms Gerrard said a mini-bus equipped with activities, and staffed by a play therapist, is at least another $100,000 away. Emma's original idea of a large rainbow bus that provides an interactive and sterile space for immune-compromised children to play, and meet with family and friends, is even further down the track.
"We've got massive ideas and we will achieve our goals. But our aim is also to put smiles on the faces of kids who are in hospital now," Ms Gerrard said.
All 4 One; All 4 Love is hosting a blow up boat race at Teralba Sailing Club on November 3. To join the fundraiser visit the charity's Facebook page.
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