In honour of Jemima Gazley, a brave 15-year-old Wellington girl who tragically lost her battle against brain cancer last month, The Wellington Phoenix will auction off a pair of its highly sought-after 2021/22 playing kits for charity.
The two auctions, for a signed Phoenix 2021/22 home and an away playing jersey – not available for public sale until January 2022 – will launch on the Trade Me auction site at 3pm today and run until 7pm on Sunday 14 November.
100% of the proceeds will go towards the work of Australian researcher Dr Matt Dun, supporting his tireless work towards finding both a cure and better treatment options for the disease which tragically claimed Jemima’s life.
In February this year, Jemima was diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) – a fatal tumour in the brain stem – and was told she had 9-12 months to live.
Undaunted, she made the selfless decision in her final weeks to raise funds towards Dr Dun’s work; donating her life savings and generating over $700,000 in funds raised towards brain cancer research, before she passed away on Tuesday 12 October.
Wellington Phoenix General Manager, David Dome says that Jemima’s strength is something that the Club will draw from as it prepares to open another season in Australia due to Covid – including its new A-League Women’s team.
“Jemima and her bravery had touched the hearts of everyone here at the Club; we wanted to do something not only to honour her memory, but to help raise awareness about brain tumours and to raise funds to assist in finding a cure for this terrible disease,” says Dome.
“We know our fans are keen to get their hands on our new season playing kits, and these two jerseys up for auction are one of only several currently in existence – with the exception of the actual playing kits being worn on opening night.
“So our hope is that our fans and the wider public get in behind these auctions in support of Dr Dun’s vital work.”
Jemima’s father Oliver says that the Club’s gesture is ‘very touching’ and means a lot to the Gazley family.
“The continuing support of Jemima’s Wish and Matt Dun and his research gives us purpose and keeps Jemima’s legacy front and centre,” says Oliver.
“DIPG is a disease that many of us have never heard of – we certainly had not. The continuing awareness of this cancer is Jemima’s wish and it is our focus.
“We are blessed to have so many supporters to help grow that awareness and raise money to help Matt find a cure. We thank the Phoenix family for this incredible gesture and wish them good luck for 21/22 season, especially the women’s team for their first season in the big league.”
The Wellington Phoenix will also honour Jemima’s legacy next month, with both the men’s and women’s side set to wear black armbands for its first double-header home match on Fri 3 December at Wollongong’s WIN Stadium.