An 11-year-old boy from Port Hawkesbury, NS, has been named the 2023 Children’s Miracle Network Champion for the IWK.
A special celebration honoring Matthew LeBlanc was held Monday at the Walmart in Port Hawkesbury.
Throughout the year, LeBlanc will represent other young patients who receive specialized care at the Halifax children’s hospital, while sharing his story in support of fundraising campaigns around the Maritimes.
LeBlanc was born prematurely at 32 weeks and spent the first six months of his life on dialysis at the IWK Health Centre. He underwent his first kidney transplant at 19 months and his second kidney transplant at the age of eight.
The IWK Foundation says he is now feeling the best he has ever had, and is ready to take on his new role as champion.
“The LeBlanc family has been sharing their story to support IWK Foundation initiatives for several years, and we are thrilled to name Matthew as this year’s 2023 Champion,” said Melanie Matheson, manager of community and corporate giving at the IWK Foundation, in a news release.
“The IWK has been an important part of Matthew’s life since he was born. He and his family are passionate about sharing their stories to help inspire others to support the IWK.”
LeBlanc and his family are set to travel to Orlando, Fla., in April to take part in events during Children’s Hospitals Week with other patients and their loved ones from across North America.
“I am so happy to represent the IWK as champion this year,” said LeBlanc. “I have spent a lot of time there and they made it a fun journey.”