RAISING FUNDS: Sarah Woolford of Casino is heading to Russia to undertake treatment for multiple sclerosis.
RAISING FUNDS: Sarah Woolford of Casino is heading to Russia to undertake treatment for multiple sclerosis. Samantha Elley

Sarah shares MS journey

SARAH Woolford is feeling empowered.

She knows she is helping others who are travelling the same path.

Diagnosed in March 2012 with multiple sclerosis, the young Casino mum started a blog in May this year - To the Moon and Back - chronicling her journey to stop the progression of the debilitating disease.

"I am in a position where I can be open and honest about what is going on," Sarah said.

"Writing is my way of getting my emotional expression out and I started the blog mainly for family and to keep them in the loop."

The response to her blog has been huge and has gone way beyond Sarah's family and friends.

"I've met (through the blog) up to a dozen women with small children and of similar age who have been newly diagnosed," she said.

"They've thanked me for being brave enough to share my story."

Sarah has spent numerous hours researching her condition and came across a story by a young Gold Coast mum which gave her hope.

"I got my initial information from a 60 Minutes story on Kristy Cruise who went to Russia to get treatment," she said.

Sarah will soon take the same trip as Kristy, having been accepted to receive a hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) in a Russian hospital.

"It's considered radical, revolutionary and experimental here in Australia but it is available in Chicago, Tel Aviv, Florence, France and Russia," she said.

"We are behind the eight ball with HSCT for MS."

HSCT is performed in Australia and all over the world for millions of cancer patients but is considered a new treatment for MS.

It won't be cheap for Sarah to head over to Russia next April as treatment is $40,000 and flights and accommodation are on top of that.

There is, however, plenty of fundraising events being planned including a Facebook auction on July 26, raffles and a big night out on Saturday, October 18.

"We have a magician/illusionist booked in and will have music and an auction," Ms Woolford said.

"Think magic, glamour and fun."

You can follow Sarah's journey at sarahwoolford.blogspot.com.au.



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