Home' The Chronicle : Canberra Chronicle 07-04-2015 Contents Tuesday, April 7, 2015 - 10
Kristin battles through pain barrier
Kristin Chait, 16, is the ACT's ambassador for juvenle arthritis.
Photo: Matt Bedford
Taking the long way around is
something Kristin Chait is getting
The 16-year-old has juvenile
arthritis, which can make running,
walking and getting up a flight of
stairs a painful prospect.
But it hasn't stopped her achieving
She became a second degree black
belt in Taekwondo in her early teens.
She plays basketball, competes in
athletic events that don't require a lot
of running, and is the ACT
ambassador for juvenile arthritis.
Kristin, who was approached by
ACT Arthritis to raise awareness of
juvenile arthritis, recently gave a
speech for Arthritis Awareness Week
about living with the condition.
"A lot of people with juvenile
arthritis are really young kids,'' she
said. "They are so young and they've
kid to deal with."
As a seven-year-old, she woke up
one morning in a lot of pain.
For about six months she went to
see doctors about her constantly
"They were trying to figure out what
was wrong,'' Kristin said.
"They thought it was a sprained
ankle but there was swelling that
didn't go away.
After a blood test they found it
"There was no history in the family,
so it was a bit confusing." Despite her
precocious talent in martial arts, she
decided to give it away due to ongoing
"It has impacted what I can do in
terms of my sport and activities,''
"And going around school there are
so many stairs.
I just adjust life and take the
Ankles, knees and hips can ache,
while physiotherapy, strapping and
medication are needed regularly.
Meanwhile, her role as ambassador
means advocating for those afflicted.
Looking forward, Kristin said her role
would be to continue promoting the
need for research and medical support
for those with juvenile arthritis and
The Belconnen suburbs of Liberal
Speaker Vicki Dunne and transport
spokesman Alistair Coe have been
shifted into a new Gungahlin-based
electorate, forcing the pair to rethink
where they might stand at the 2016
The ACT Electoral Commission
released its proposed new boundaries
last Tuesday, dividing the city into five
electorates instead of the current three.
Canberrans have 28 days to object.
The Belconnen suburbs of Evatt,
McKellar, Lawson, Kaleen and
Giralang have been carved off the
Ginninderra electorate and added to a
new Gungahlin electorate, which has
been named Yerrabi.
The commission's redistribution
committee suggests Aboriginal names
with connections to the landscape for
the five electorates.
The central electorate, based on the
inner north and inner south, is to be
called Kurrajong, the name of a tree
and the original name for Capital Hill
where Parliament House now stands.
It was called Molonglo but the name
has been dropped to avoid confusion
with the Molonglo Valley, no longer
part of the central electorate.
The new Weston Creek-Woden
electorate is to be called
The remaining two electorates keep
their current names -- Ginninderra (the
name of the Belconnen lake), and
Brindabella (for the mountain range
that dominates the view).
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