She’s opening children’s eyes

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A Queenstown cancer survivor aims to get her self-published children’s book into every primary school in the country. 

Teresa Murphy, 39, wrote My Special Friend during cancer treatment three years ago. 

The words sprang from “a wave of gratitude” for her caring partner Cory Muller, whom she’d met just three months before being diagnosed. 

“It was just a love poem from a girl to a boy but once I picked it up a few months later I thought, ‘this is a kids’ book’.” 

Murphy, who moved to Queenstown two years ago, had the text illustrated by a long-time friend and self-published the book late last year. 

She’s now trying to raise $5000 through fundraising by June 19 – via pledgeme.co.nz –to help pay off her printing bill and get the book into as many primary schools as possible. 

Those making pledges can sign up for rewards – the higher the donation, the greater the reward. 

“I know it relates really well to the New Zealand curriculum where they teach children about compassion, relationships, friendship and love,” Murphy says. 

“It’s based on a true story, it carries truth, and I think that is something children need to hear – too often we sanitise things.” 

In conjunction with the book, Queenstown Library is running a competition for children to write about their special friend.