Arato’s Jeans for Genes Fundraiser

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Meet Arato

Why I’m doing Jeans for Genes

As many of you know, Arato has been diagnosed with genetic blindness and has been announced as a face of the 2022 Jeans for Genes campaign! 

It raises money for CMRI who were involved in Australia’s first gene therapy for genetic blindness, which gives all of us hope. 

Please support our fundraiser.

Arato's Story

As a naturally gifted and determined young tennis star, Arato dreamt of one day becoming a professional player – until he started missing shots he had once found easy.

His coach told Arato’s father, Tim, that something odd was happening, which he could not explain.

“Immediately upon explaining it to me, I had a feeling what the problem was,’’ said Tim.

Arato, aged 10, is one of the faces of the 2022 Jeans for Genes campaign which raises funds for the vital work being done in the labs at Children’s Medical Research Institute. Medical research is moving faster than ever, but investment is much slower. The 1 in 20 children facing a birth defect or genetic disease live in hope that one day the incurable can become curable.

Only 18 months ago, Arato was diagnosed with genetic blindness. Tim recognised the symptoms because he also lives with the same condition. Stargardt’s Disease impacts your central vision and often starts in childhood with black spots in the centre of the child’s vision and sensitivity to light.

“It was 25 years ago when I was in full training as a triathlete myself,’’ Tim said. “My training partners could see that I was hitting objects on the road or tripping over things on the footpath, and so I had a similar problem.

“People often ask me, ‘Tim, what can you see?’ When I explain to them that I'm not walking around with a white cane all the time, but if you're standing a metre away from me, I can't see your face.’’

Arato now plays in Tennis Australia’s Low Vision Competition where he is experiencing great success. School is a bit more challenging, because he struggles to recognise the faces of his friends, which requires a lot of adjustment.

Mum, Junko, holds out hope for the research being done in the Eye Genetics Research Unit at Children’s Medical Research Institute. Professor Robyn Jamieson was on the team who delivered the first ever gene therapy for a blinding eye condition in Australia and is leading the way in finding new treatments for many forms of genetic blindness.

“We heard about a clinical trial happening for children with Stargardt's Disease aged from 12 to 18, but Arato is only 10, so he’s still not eligible, but it's exciting that it's happening. I was so happy to hear about that research.’’

Tim said the family are getting behind Jeans for Genes to encourage people to invest in research.

“You know, I can't help but to make the comparison with the COVID vaccinations, how quickly when institutions and government work collaboratively together and fund the research at an appropriate level that how quickly we can develop vaccinations. Stargardt's Disease or macular juvenile dystrophies are extremely complicated, but it can all be linked back to funding.

“We remain hopeful there will be a treatment for Stargardt's and hopefully that treatment will enable Arato’s vision to be restored.’’

Thank you to our Sponsors

$4.17k

Katsuda Synergy Lawyers

Thank you to everyone who supported this campaign. Let's make the incurable, curable. 皆様のあたたかいお気持ちを胸に、これからも頑張ります!

$4.17k

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$3.13k

Cammeray Public School

Thank you Arato from Cammeray Public School. You have been a proud ambassador for us this year.

$3.13k

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$1.33k

Dad And David Ironman Funds Raised

$1,000

Keita Abe

$1,000

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$1,000

Arato's Grandparents In Japan

$1,000

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$317

Scs Global Consulting Australia

Hope this small support will help Arato kun.

$317

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Your donation has been doubled

$317

Nichirei Australia Pty Ltd

$317

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$264

Rachel Koh

thank you for your generous matching donations 💜

$264

Matched Giver

Your donation has been doubled

$211

Anonymous

$211

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$211

Nahoko Uchioka

I hope more children with genetic diseases will have more smiles on their faces in the near future, as a mother, an early childhood educator and a friend of Arato.

$211

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Your donation has been doubled

$200

Campbelltown City Council - Csg

$200

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Your donation has been doubled

$200

Keiko & Masaya Nakazato

This support will help Aratokun.

$200

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Your donation has been doubled

$162

Campbelltown City Council - City Development Team

$158

Shigekazu Ueno

This is a really good donation.

$158

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$130

Campbelltown City Library

$129

Koichi

$129

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$110

Harunobu Inukai

$110

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$110

Anonymous

$110

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$110

Nicole Jenkins

$110

Anonymous

$110

Kerrie Curtis

$110

Anonymous

I hope to contribute to the future and hope of children with disabilities.

$110

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Your donation has been doubled

$110

Tiana Phillips

$110

Anonymous

$110

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$110

Yams Food Pty Ltd

$110

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$110

Maki Kwong

$110

Ichiro Nakane

このような機会を戴きましたことに感謝申し上げます。Learn from yesterday, Live for today, Hope for Tomorrow.

$110

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Your donation has been doubled

$110

Corinne Mears

What an inspiration to all

$110

Makoto Shimizu

I am very happy to donate for HOPE!

$110

Lindy Deitz

$110

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$110

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$110

Masao Miyairi

$110

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$110

Hayley Burn

We are all behind you, our superstar tennis player and budding model.

$110

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$110

The Heng Family

Arato, you are an inspiration! Keep on believing and doing great work. You are an amazing young man and we wish you the very best in tennis and everything you aspire to do!

$110

Y Yao

希望が1日でも早く実るといいですね。

$110

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$110

Hisae Costello

$110

Rob & Felicity Fletcher

Best of luck Arato - you are an inspiration!

$110

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$110

Hiroaki Uchida

$110

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$106

Yachiyo

$106

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$106

Yachiyo

$106

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$106

Campbelltown's City Development Team

$106

S H

$106

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$104

Kenji Yamashita

$104

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$104

Adam And Nat Dawson

$100

Stephen Wilkinson

$100

Phu Nguyen

$91

Yumi Nakamoto

$91

Satomi Terado

あらとくん いつも頑張っているね。 いつでも日本語クラスに遊びにきてくださいね

$91

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$91

Shakil Mim

$91

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$91

Anonymous

$91

Nancy Kruske

$72

Katsuda Synergy Lawyers

$72

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$60

Campbelltown City Council Csg

$56

Yoko Kumazawa

$56

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$56

Nanase Izumida

$56

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$56

Tomoko Abe

$56

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$56

Szymon

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

Mihoko Kurosawa

This is a great idea! Ouen shite imasu!

$56

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$56

Joseph Macdonald

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

Therese Vaughn

$56

Anonymous

$56

Emma And John Hughes

Best of luck Arato and Tim with your fundraising efforts

$56

Nancy Kruske

$56

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$56

Rika Nakano

$56

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$56

Hikari Kitahara

$56

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$56

Yuki Kato

$56

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$56

Hiroaki Okamoto

$56

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$56

Phoebe Finlay

It was so lovely to meet you all. Look forward to seeing you at the next tournament!

$56

Narelle Macdonald

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

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$56

Ben Dew

Keep hitting winners Arato!

$56

Dominique Abbott

$56

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$56

Anonymous

$56

Hiroshi Torii

$56

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Your donation has been doubled

$53

Anonymous

I sincerely hope that gene therapy research advances and that a cure for many people can be found in the future.

$53

Takahiro Kondo

$53

Josh Waite

Such a great cause!

$53

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$53

Mandy Liu

$53

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$53

Makoto Nakamura

$53

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$53

Anonymous

$53

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$50

Barbara & Peter Travis

$42

Dee Nelson

Arato, you have grown so much since I taught you when you were in Pre-School! Well done for sharing your story!

$42

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$42

Yamasaki

$42

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$42

Sh

$42

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$34

P&k

$32

Yuka Matsumura

応援しています!

$32

Makiko Senoo

$32

Anonymous

$32

Shiori Kuriyama

$32

Hikari Mcmahon

With love

$32

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$30

Yoko Creber

$30

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$26

Tomonori Tsuyuki

$26

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$26

Nobuko Shitoh

$26

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$25

Makoto Masuko

$25

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$25

Tomoko Turnley

$25

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$21

Masato Nakase

I hope your son can teach my son (5yrs old) how to play tennis some day

$21

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$21

Zoe Harpham

$21

Anonymous

$21

Anonymous

$21

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$21

Melissa Low

Go Team Arato!

$21

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$20

Erika Simpson

$20

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K

$20

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Elizabeth Johnson

$20

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Emma Pringle

$20

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$20

Midori

Very impressed by the message of Katsuda-san. For the better future.

$20

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$11

Mayumi Nakao

$11

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$11

Ayumi Malmgren

$11

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$11

Anonymous

$10

Eriko Ishii

少しですが応援させてください。時には立ち止まってもいい!力強く、前を向いて歩んでいけますように!

$10

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$10

Leanne Abello

$10

Sk

$10

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$5

Danah Suckling

$5

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Anonymous

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