Ronél Steyn and Cupcakes of Hope spearhead fundraising for critical cancer treatment

Sandy, from Cupcake of Hope, and Stehan Knuppe. l FILE

Sandy, from Cupcake of Hope, and Stehan Knuppe. l FILE

Published Jun 1, 2024


Ronél Steyn, an ambassador for Cupcakes of Hope, a non-profit organisation that supports childhood cancer in South Africa, is on a mission to mobilise support and raise funds to the tune of R600 000 for Stehan Knuppe's cancer treatment.

Stehan, a 6-year-old from Dana Bay (just outside Mossel Bay), was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a kind of cancer that begins in early nerve cells, two years ago.

In November 2022, he won the battle after a valiant effort.

However, he was diagnosed with leukaemia on April 23.

Stehan is now fighting for his life at the Red Cross Children's Hospital in Cape Town, where he is undergoing severe chemotherapy.

Steyn, who has lived in Europe since 1996 and in France since 2009, still visits South Africa twice a year work tirelessly to help combat childhood cancer in the country,.

Chosen as an Olympic torchbearer in France due to her work, her career is focused on cancer research, underscoring her commitment to vulnerable children.

Steyn reflects on her time carrying the torch, saying it was a wonderful event filled with both delight and sadness.

“I carry this flame with a special thought to all the innocent children facing cancer, especially those in South Africa,” she said.

Throughout her torchbearer journey, she kept Stehan’s portrait near her heart as a reminder of the children she advocates for on a daily basis.

Despite living overseas, Steyn regularly conducts fundraising events in SA, utilising current communication technology.

Her current attention is supposed to be on Stehan, who urgently needs a life-saving chemotherapeutic medication.

Steyn is also working closely with his family and organisations to prepare a massive virtual fundraiser in South Africa and Europe, with the goal of involving thousands of people.

It has been discovered that this medication is Stehan's sole hope of survival.

The aim of raising R600 000 for Stehan is to motivate 6 000 people to get up and be active for 6km, whether they walk, run, swim, or spend 6 000 seconds in the gym or on a trampoline, among many others activities.

“The goal is to have 6 000 people participate in an activity, with each person donating R100 to a total of R600 000.

“The event will be launched to coincide with the opening of the Olympic Games in Paris on July 24, and several professional athletes have already confirmed their support for the initiative.

“The idea is that anyone can be a champion, and people can decide whether they want to do the distance in one day or over several weeks. There is no age limit, no time limit, and no limit to the amount of fun that this virtual race can be,” she said.

While the campaign officially runs from July 24 to August 18, alongside the Olympic Games, donations can already be made via the Cupcakes of Hope website.

Saturday Star