Benefit for family caring for sick child receives generous community support

People bidding at the silent auction benefit.

Tom Henihan
Express Staff

Approximately 150 people attended the “Hot Coffee Flavors of the World” and silent auction benefit to raise funds for Randy and Melanie Fillion while their daughter Nadia, who was born last July with a congenital heart problem receives treatment in Edmonton.

While Nadia receives care, Melanie Fillion and Nadia must live in Edmonton and Randy and their other children must often commute regularly to the city, a situation that places a considerable financial burden on the family.

To raise funds Pastor Todd Moore and members of the Victory Life Church, invited the community to join them for coffee from around the world, some delicious teas and a silent auction of items generously donated by local businesses and individuals.

“This event is to bless Randy and Melanie Fillion, a couple within our community who has recently had a child with heart problems,” says Pastor Todd Moore.

Nadia’s condition involves a damaged valve in one of the ventricles, a type of heart defect that a child is born with. It occurs when one of the two pumping ventricles, is not large enough or strong enough to work correctly.

According to the Boston Children’s Hospital, “Single ventricle defects are rare, affecting only about five out of 100,000 newborns. They are also one of the most complex heart problems, usually requiring at least one surgery.”

On the positive side, Boston Children’s Hospital has 98 percent success in treating the condition.”

Nadia’s health is improving and she requires less oxygen as her heart is getting stronger. She is able to leave the hospital with her mother but they can’t leave Edmonton as they have to be close to the hospital for monitoring and in case of an emergency.

There is another surgery scheduled for some time next month when the baby will have to be hospitalized again for a period of time. She will also have to be monitored after the surgery.

At the December 2 benefit, the international coffee selection included Jamaican, Haiti, Kona, Tanzania Peaberry and Ethiopian blends.

The silent auction offered an extensive array of donated items which was timely for people looking for Christmas gifts while also helping the Fillion family.

There were a number of door prizes with the main door prize being a one night stay for two at Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton.

The organizers of the Hot Flavors of the World were pleased with the response at the December 2 benefit.

“The funds raised far exceeded my expectations, and we greatly appreciate the businesses and people who donated and those who came out to the event. In the donations, we really saw community support.”

All proceeds raised at the event go to Randy and Melanie Fillion.

Donations are still being accepted for the Fillions while their child is in need of medical attention. People wishing to donate can drop by McLennan Victory Life Church or call (780) 324-3039.

Nadia and family in Edmonton.

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