From the time she was born, Hélène has been on the move. Moments after birth, she had her groove going -her hands would not keep still. Now at twenty, not only is she constantly on the go, but her joyful personality contagiously lifts the spirits of others. Whether at school, work, church, in hospital, or studying in Spain, people have easily joined with her and enjoyed her positive vibe.
Hélène has been famous for her kindness towards others and she received an award for this in grade six. At her high school graduation, she was given the Christine Proulx Award for her cooperation and perpetual willingness to help others. Someone commented “She has such a bubbly disposition; she should have a new soft drink named after her.”
Hélène loves music. People marvel at the variety she keeps on her iPod and how she integrates it with another passion of hers – film making. She loves capturing memorable moments, but her specialty seems to be creating them. Her mini musical dance documentary in Spain involving many friends and strangers is the perfect example of her ability to create joyful moments out of daily experiences. She believes life is worth living and sharing, a theme through many of her videos. With music in the background, camera in hand, smile on her face and not a minute to lose, she’s on the move…
In July 2011, Hélène was admitted to The Ottawa Hospital with collapsed lungs. It was discovered that she suffers from advanced Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. This means that her lungs have been permanently scarred by inflammation and the root cause of the inflammation is unknown. Treatment with Prednisone has not stopped the progression of the disease. Hélène requires oxygen to perform physical tasks. With twenty-four percent of remaining breathing capacity, a lung transplant is the next step. She has been referred to the Transplant Program in Toronto. She and some of her family must relocate from Ottawa to Toronto.
This is a time of loss for Hélène - independence, physical strength, employment income, and savings for school. Despite this, she chooses to focus on the positives in her life like family, friends, new friends from her stay in hospital and creative media. We see her with her radiant smile, enjoying even the simplest things in life, like orange juice and Reese’s limited edition chocolate bars. Even though she must now pace herself, she is still always moving onward.
-Hélène, you are an inspiration-
If you wish to donate to Hélène's living expenses in Toronto, while she waits to receive new lungs and during her recovery, please visit alungstory.ca
Special thanks to everyone that helped me produce this video (footage, music, photos, etc.)
Manon, Alan and Hélène Campbell
Mylo Xyloto by Coldlay
Hurts Like Heaven by Coldplay
Keep Breathing by Ingrid Michaelson
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