My Place

Author Marnie Hibbert with her book The Eczema Detective (Damjan Janevski). 363801_02

Graphic designer, photographer, and author Marnie Hibbert chats to Zoe Moffatt about living in Sunbury and her son’s diagnosis with eczema.

What’s your connection to Sunbury?

My family and I have lived in Sunbury for nine years now.

What do you like about where you live?

Sunbury has a lovely community feel. Having moved here when our daughter was one meant that making friends and connections was naturally grown. I love that I see familiar faces when I’m out and it’s comforting to me that others know my kids and look out for them. I also love having the airport close by so it’s easy to visit family interstate.

What, if anything, would you change about where you live?

I would really love the beach and sea air in our backyard. My family has many grass and tree pollen allergies so the sea air would be a welcome relief.

Where is your favourite local place to spend time?

I love exploring nature at The Nook with my kids. The mature trees, shade and pretty landscape with the river is calming. I also love all the gluten free treats at Double Shot Café – amazing!

Tell us something people would be surprised to know about you?

I’ve travelled to over 20 countries, five of those have been with my kids. Oh and I was charged by a hippo in Kenya!

You just launched your second children’s book, tell us about it?

My son Levi suffered with eczema from around four years old. His preschool friends began pointing and questioning why Levi’s eyes were red and flaky, and wondered if they could ‘catch’ the spots off Levi. I quickly realised I needed a simple and age-appropriate tool to explain eczema to him and his friends, so creating a book is an easy and simple way that I could explain a big concept to help children anywhere in the world.

Most books I found for eczema were about managing eczema, and not about explaining what eczema is to a young audience, so I created ‘The Eczema Detective’. It’s honest, uplifting, and a book that I wish I had when my son was little. I included fun activities so learning about what helps your child is more enjoyable for everyone.

I worked with the Eczema Association of Australasia to ensure all medical information was accurate and credible. Several medical professionals were also involved to create a comprehensive resource for parents, so not only is it an empowering story for young children, it’s also an empowering eczema wellness tool for adults with the clinical facts and helpful tips.

Thankfully we now know what triggers Levi’s eczema and continue to manage it so his skin is clear, smooth and comfortable.