House built with donated materials and labour for Children’s Cancer Institute is to be auctioned in November

You can build many things into a home, but compassion rarely comes with the fixtures and fittings.

Yet there is a new house in Sydney up for auction, built on a strong foundation of generosity of heart, with the land, materials and labor all donated to find a cure for childhood cancer.

“There’s a powerful sense that this home was built with love,” says Anne Johnston of the Children’s Cancer Institute.

“When you see the selflessness of the people who gave so much to build this house that we can auction to raise money… It’s breathtaking.

The four-bedroom house will be auctioned in November. Photo: Delivered

“And that’s especially at a time like this when so many people are having such a hard time. But it makes it even more beautiful to see such a beautiful story of people coming together in such a heartwarming spirit of generosity to support children.”

The luxury four bedroom house on a raised 900 square meter corner block with stunning green views in the new master planned community of Mulgoa Sanctuary, in Glenmore Park, west of Sydney, will be auctioned in November, with all proceeds going to the institute to help fund their mission to find a cure for childhood cancer.

Mulgoa Sanctuary and Mulgoa Quarries donated the land, McDonald Jones Homes donated the house, and an army of craftsmen and contractors donated their labor for free in the name of the Build for a Cure campaign.

The house stands on a block of 900 square meters. Photo: Delivered

“It was so humbling to be a part of this,” said Cameron Lade of McDonald Jones Homes.

“I was just amazed at the response we got from our subcontractors and suppliers, even though this has been such a challenging time for so many. They didn’t hesitate to sign up and get involved for a good cause.

“It was quite inspiring to be there, with so many people working there, all out of the goodness of their hearts. It was very humiliating.”

Among the people watching were Joel Sedger, 15, and his mother Melissa Herron.

They feel particularly connected to the project; Joel is one of the lucky survivors of childhood cancer and would love nothing more than to see a cure found so other kids don’t have to go through what he did.

Joel Sedger during cancer treatment when he was a baby. Photo: Delivered

He was only 12 weeks old when he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, the most common solid tumor in infants and young children and fatal to more than one in two children.

Joel underwent five months of chemotherapy in the intensive care unit and then had surgery to remove the rest of the tumor. He was in remission on his first birthday, but had regular visits to a clinic for checkups and counseling, and now has checkups every two years.

“I think building a house is a great idea because it raises so much money for such a good cause,” said Joel, who is in grade 10 and plans to become an electrician.

“I was hoping to help the electricians in the house make my contribution, but unfortunately we couldn’t do that with COVID.

“I think we had a lot of helping hands when I was young, and I always want to give back when I can. We know how those kids and their parents feel.”

Joel Sedger, now 15, is urging people to donate a brick to help build the house. Photo: Delivered

Melissa, 48, a policewoman, says they were very lucky, but not many children with cancer.

“Many of them lost their battles and we always remember them,” she said. “The amount this campaign is raising is so important, and Joel would have loved to help.”

The public is also being asked to show their support by purchasing a virtual brick — or two or three or ten — in front of the house for $20 a brick.

Anyone interested in bidding on the entire home, with its open-plan living room, large outdoor space, separate study, home theater, two and a half bathrooms, and butler’s pantry, is invited to attend the auction at a date to be announced.

“We hope it will be bought for more than a million dollars,” said Ms. Johnston. “But the beauty of being in Sydney is that property prices have really gone up.

“So, in addition to someone getting a nice house, we should receive an amount that will prove to be very valuable to us. Twenty children a week get cancer in Australia, and many don’t make it. This will prove to be such a big help to be.”

For more information, visit the Children’s Cancer Institute website.

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