Dancing it up for Joshie

Josh would be so proud: Hannah White is preparing for a big night of dance in honour of her late son Joshua. Photo: Rachel Mounsey

Josh would be so proud: Hannah White is preparing for a big night of dance in honour of her late son Joshua. Photo: Rachel Mounsey

Hannah White is not a woman to shy away from life's challenges.

So when her co-worker nominated the Eden woman to take part in this year's Stars of the Bega Valley Dance for Cancer she was right on to it. Especially since the fight against cancer is a cause so close to Hannah's heart.

In November, Hannah's five-year-old son Joshua "Joshie" Oakhill lost his two-and-a-half-year battle to rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare form of childhood cancer.

After receiving the news that Joshua's diagnosis was terminal, Hannah set up the #DoItForJoshie social media page, which quickly gained momentum. Pretty soon people were chicken dancing all over the world in support of Joshua.

"It had a massive following - whole football teams were chicken dancing, I even had people from as far away as the UK sending in videos," Hannah said.

"Joshie loved to dance and the chicken dance was his favourite. We were overwhelmed with the amount of support he received."

Although Hannah doesn't consider herself much of a dancer, she said she's been busy taming her two left feet under the guidance of dance teacher Ray McGovern for the Cancer Council's gala event.

Hannah White and Joshua Oakhill

Hannah White and Joshua Oakhill

"I've never really been the dancing type, learning the steps has been a bit of a challenge," the 24-year-old admitted.

"But all the work in rehearsals are starting to pay off. I don't know what I look like - but I'm starting to feel like a professional," she joked.

Fundraising was proving a bit more of a challenge, Hannah said as she has been juggling the Bega Valley Stars commitment along with work and her two under-five-year-old daughters.

"But we're getting there."

Unable to reveal any secrets about dance style or outfits, Hannah confessed the audience can look forward to a dance in honour of Joshua with a very special twist at the end.

"I can't say much but I hope people love the dance just as much as I've enjoyed making it. I know Joshie is looking down on me proudly," she said.

At the time of printing the seven Bega Valley Stars had raised just over $10,000 in funds for the Cancer Council. Hannah was considered a 'top star' with almost $2000 raised so far.

Stars of Bega Valley Dance for Cancer will be held at 6pm, Club Sapphire on Saturday, August 31.

For tickets or to sponsor your favourite star visit the Cancer Council Everyday Hero website page.

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