Local Lady Meriem Daoui
by Stephanie Williams
Meriem is a registered nurse with a passion for running. This May, she’s using her running to raise money for children living with serious illnesses in Tasmania.
Where in Hobart do you live? I live in the beautiful suburb of Kingston, about a 15min drive from Hobart
What’s the best thing about Hobart? The diversity and close proximity of places. You can be shopping at the mall or Salamanca Market and then within a 10-20 minute drive you can be strolling and enjoying the beautiful beaches of Hobart or enjoying the views that Mount Wellington has to offer.
And the worst? The unpredictable Hobart weather can be tricky especially when trying to organise events.
Tell us a little about your work? I’m a registered nurse currently working in paediatrics and oncology. I absolutely love my job and I am very grateful to be able to work in a rewarding and fulfilling career.
You have organised a special running fundraiser this month. Why is the cause is close to your heart? In Australia, more than 1000 children are diagnosed with cancer each year. Cancer also kills more children than any other disease in Australia. Treatment can go for years, can be very intensive and expensive, and puts an enormous strain on the patient and their family. As a registered nurse, I have witnessed firsthand the challenges families are faced when dealing with childhood cancer. On 17 May I will be running the Point to Pinnacle course every day for one week to raise funds and awareness for childhood cancer. The course, also known as the world’s hardest half marathon, starts from Wrest Point Casino and finishes at the pinnacle of Mount Wellington. The course is 21.1km long and just over 1,270 metres. Running this seven times is equivalent to running up Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world. The challenge will bring me to an elevation gain of 8890m and a distance of 147 kilometres. All funds raised will be directed to the Tim Blair Run for Kids Foundation, which is a Tasmanian not-for-profit, supporting local families fighting serious childhood illnesses. This includes providing financial and social support for Tasmanian families going through childhood cancer as well as raising funds for vital research.
How can people get involved? You can support the event by donating, sharing the event with family and friends, and participating at the Kingston parkrun. The Kingston parkrun is a 5km run/walk on Saturday 22 May. The run will help raise funds and awareness for the event. The theme of the run is to wear yellow or a yellow ribbon to represent childhood cancer. You can directly donate at www.timblairrunforkids.org. Reference ‘Everest’ in your payment so we can keep track of funds raised
What advice would you give someone interested in starting running? My best advice is to find a friend or running group you can run with. Most importantly, enjoy the run and create realistic and achievable goals. There are many group runs that you can join during the week which have runners and walkers from all walks of life and fitness levels, like Tasmanian Road Runners, Hobart Trail Runners and Knockoffs Run Club. More information can be found by searching the groups on social media.
What’s your dream project to work on? I don’t have a specific project in mind but I do have a philosophy which is to better myself, learn from my mistakes and use my experiences to help others. Whenever I seek an opportunity to contribute towards the community I take it. This includes organising fundraising events for important causes, volunteering or just being there for a friend. In the past I have gone through a lot of hardship and the support I had received from friends, family and complete strangers is what got me through. I want to give back to those who have helped me. The support I received during my darkest moments is invaluable. I also believe every hardship happens for a reason, I want to use my experiences to help and support others who may be going through a similar hardship.
Where’s your favourite Hobart eatery? Urban Greek is definitely one of my favourite dinner outings. Their meals never disappoint!
Drink of choice and where do you head for it? My favourite drink would definitely have to be a chai latte. I usually grab a takeaway chai latte from LivEat or Banjos on the way to work or after a long busy shift.
Quote to live by? “Faith is beautiful. You don’t have to see the whole path ahead of you in order to walk it. Take your time in your journey. Appreciate all that the almighty has sent you. Keep moving even if it’s baby steps. Most importantly, be consistent. You will get there eventually” – Mufti Ismail Menk