27 Apr 2017
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Four-year-old Zac has suffered from serious eczema since he was nine months old. It not only makes him very itchy and uncomfortable, but it causes skin infections too.
The active, art-loving Kiwi lives with his two brothers and mum in the Bay of Plenty. Several times a day his mum, Emma, has to cover him head to toe with ointment and give him other medication. His skin is made worse by many things, including dust, heat, certain foods, and especially the clothes he wears.

Everything has his skin contacts must be 100% cotton, including his clothes, pillow, pillowcase, sheets, duvet and even his mattress protector. 

Because of the heavy, greasy cream that Zac needs to keep his skin moisturised, his clothes and bedding become easily worn and the residue wears out the washing machine faster too. Even the washing machine liquid has become a huge cost for the family.

Emma is a devoted mum and loves her boys dearly, but without support it was becoming impossible to get Zac the cotton clothing and bedding he needed. She couldn’t shop at low-cost stores for clothes like she does for his brothers, as the synthetic fibres hurt Zac’s skin.

Zac’s mum applied to Variety for funding last year, and he was able to get a fresh set of cotton bedding, and clothing for the winter too. The difference was almost immediate:

“He used to wake up every hour, scratching his skin and crying because of how uncomfortable he was. It affected his personality, and mine too, neither of us were getting any sleep for nights on end,” said Emma. 

But now, he’s sleeping through the night, and the rest of the family are too. 

While Zac’s condition is severe and ongoing, the gift of cotton clothing and bedding truly made a world of difference for this young Kiwi. Thanks to Variety’s family of supporters, he can have the same opportunities as other kids to have a healthier, happier childhood. 

Make a difference for a Kiwi kid like Zac. Donate today.

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