This year I decided to support a charity as part of my 65th birthday celebration. This was a heartfelt decision as I’ve survived breast cancer and my partner Terry saw his wife die of cancer 23 years ago. The birthday party was Terry’s idea and gift to me.
I love life and celebrate every day. Retirement is not for me, yet. After many years of working in adult educational management, I currently run my own consultancy business doing small projects mainly for health department agencies. Family time is also a priority – there is my partner, my two grown sons and my 2-year old grandson. I am also a passionate amateur photographer and express my creativity through this art form as often as possible.
Invitations to the celebration included the request of no presents please. Having all that I need in life, it seemed appropriate and timely to ask people to make a donation to cancer research rather than bring me presents. The request didn’t particularly surprise my family, as I’ve done overseas mission work in the past which included raising money for the mission. I knew about ACRF and its efforts in cancer research from another friend, whose wife died last year, and donations in lieu of flowers were requested then.
The theme colours used for the party were purple and orange with silver and our large outdoor area was decorated in these colours with balloons, lanterns and anything else we could find. At the party entrance there was a large purple box decorated with the silver ACRF ribbons and donation envelopes. Nearly everyone who made a donation has been affected by cancer.
It is sad how many families are dealing with this horrible disease. One of my dear friends died of breast cancer in 2014, there is my own experience and that of my partner. There are undoubtedly many cancer not-for-profit organisations deserving our support but the most important thing to me is that better methods of prevention, detection and treatment are found for the many cancers affecting us and that is the goal of ACRF through continued research.
To anyone thinking about supporting cancer research, I would say, why hesitate – just do it! Give someone a chance to live, help put an end to all cancers.
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