Member Story – The Dix Family

In July 2020, in the middle of the Covid-19 global health pandemic, my husband Chris and I had to fly to Ukraine for the birth of our biological twin girls, carried by our wonderful surrogate, Anastasia. We made the very difficult decision to leave our young sons, Beau 5 and Arlo 2 years of age, in Australia in the loving care of their grandparents. With the introduction of flight caps, we became very worried when our return flight was cancelled and there were no other options to get our babies home and return to our young boys. A feeling of helplessness set in. We were stranded in the Ukraine with no idea of what lay ahead.

After numerous cancelled bookings, we were lucky enough to get a flight home. By the time we finally made it to quarantine in Sydney, we were emotionally and physically exhausted and desperate to see our sons. We were also very worried about our parents who had been caring for our boys for over 3 months and were struggling to cope. On top of it all, we were financially stressed as my husband hadn’t worked for months while overseas and it had been extremely expensive to get our babies home.

We were so lucky that my employer Rio Tinto engaged Miners’ Promise to support us when we returned. We received a call from a Miners’ Promise Family Support Advisor at the start of our quarantine in Sydney. She is an amazing person, so kind and understanding. She touched base every day and really listened to all the things that were worrying us. She quickly organised practical support for my parents including regular babysitting, a cleaner and a gardener. She also contacted my mother regularly to check on how she was coping. My mum was so relieved to have some time to herself and was very thankful for the care and help she received from Miners’ Promise.

Our Family Support Advisor was there to help us navigate all the big and small hurdles. I hurt my back during our stay in quarantine and she managed to find a Physio appointment for me on our one free day in Sydney which happened to be a public holiday! It made the world of difference to my back, my sleep and my mindset just before we flew home to our sons.

We were very worried about our finances after all the additional costs to get home and impending costs associated with twins. Our Family Support Advisor was amazing and managed to organise some financial support which enabled us to get a double pram and non-disposable nappies for the twins. The pram was a life-saver! She even arranged a Coles voucher for our two weeks in home isolation when we finally got back to Perth.

Over the next 4 months, our Family Support Advisor helped me to process and recover from our experience so I could better support our children and enjoy our precious family time.

Chris and I are so grateful that Miners’ Promise was there for us during the most frightening and uncertain time of our lives. I don’t think we could have navigated and processed all the challenges we faced without her by our side. Thank you Miners’ Promise and Rio Tinto, we will be forever grateful.

The Dix Family