Thanks to Turia Pitt’s unwavering support, thousands of people across the Asia Pacific have received life-changing surgery.

Born in Tahiti before migrating to Australia at age three, Turia went on to earn her double degree with honours in Mining Engineering and Science from the University of New South Wales.

Turia was working for Rio Tinto at their prestigious Argyle Diamond Mine when life was turned upside down in September 2011. While competing in an ultra-marathon in the Kimberley region, she became trapped by a grassfire that left her with serious burns to 65 per cent of her body.

Turia soon began the painful journey of recovery and rehabilitation. Although the journey continues to this day, she doesn’t shy away from challenge.

Since the fire, Turia has embarked on numerous challenges such as competing in Iron Man events (including the upcoming World Championship), studying for her MBA, trekking Peru, the Great Wall of China and the Kokoda Track (PNG), lead a trek for Interplast to Everest Basecamp. She published her memoirs in 2013, has graced numerous pages of magazines, runs a successful motivational speaking business and gives passionately and selflessly to causes she cares about.

In her capacity as ambassador, Turia supports Interplast by personally hosting events, speaking, and leading fundraising adventures. Through this work, along with her support for other Interplast fundraising initiatives, Turia has directly and indirectly contributed to more than $1 million being raised to support our work.

To learn more about Turia and her inspiring work, sign-up for her newsletter on her website or follow her social media activity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (for Twitter and Instagram search the handle @TuriaPitt).

To support Turia’s work with Interplast, click here.

Mike Rolls: Author, athlete and proud double amputee

At the age of 18, Mike’s life changed forever when he contracted one of the deadliest diseases on the planet; Meningococcal Septicaemia while celebrating an end of season Football trip to Tasmania. He was extremely lucky to survive. Mike was left with horrific internal and external injuries and he faced years of rehabilitation.

Mike’s first operations were with Dr Frank Kimble in Hobart who amputated Mike’s right leg, half of his left foot and two fingers during the height of his illness. During the early days of his recovery, Mike had more surgery when Professor Wayne Morrison reconstructed his nose that had also been badly damaged during his time in hospital in Hobart.

Eight years later, Associate Professor Michael Leung amputated Mike’s remaining left leg. Dr Chris Coombs then operated on one of his fingers to address his severe arthritis in the joint, a complication also resulting from Meningococcal.

All four surgeons are specialists in plastic and reconstructive surgery, and coincidently, also volunteer for Interplast. Today, Mike is a professional speaker, author, coach and athlete and now a very proud Interplast ambassador who has intimate experience of the incredible, life-saving work Australian plastic surgeons perform on a daily basis.

Mike shares his stories of resilience with humour and honesty “Once I got through my dark days, strengthened my muscles and could walk around pain free, I realised this experience didn’t have to be a negative one, on the contrary, in many ways, there have been so many positives” he said.

Mike has raised money for Interplast by running a five-kilometre marathon, tackling the Eureka Climb and stomping for Interplast at Melbourne’s Stadium Stomp.

Mike is looking forward to working alongside fellow Interplast ambassador, Turia Pitt.

WATCH: Get a taste of Turia’s engaging, down-to-earth style and be inspired by her story