WHOW (Women Helping Other Women) sprang from my own experience of breast cancer. Being breast aware meant that I discovered my cancer early and am in the 90% of those diagnosed in Australia who will survive breast cancer beyond 5 years.
While in Bali in 2009 however, I became aware of the lack of options available for women who faced a diagnosis of breast cancer. I saw an opportunity for Australian women in more fortunate positions, to help their counterparts in Bali.
In 2012, WHOW handed over $30,000 to Bali Pink Ribbon (BPR) – an organization made up of a group of volunteers dedicated to improving breast cancer services in Bali. This money enabled BPR to open a support centre in Kuta for women struggling with breast cancer. Some of the funds have also been set aside as they work towards purchasing new equipment such as a mammogram machine.
In 2013, WHOW will continue to work with BPR in looking forward and planning for a better service in Bali for women experiencing breast cancer.
Bali Pink Ribbon work supports the work being done by the Prima Medika Hospital in Bali around Cancer but takes a focus on breast cancer specifically.
All WHOW events are registered fundraisers thus ensuring that all monies raised are accounted for and reach their destination.
2013's Fundraiser Concert
Above image description:
Models Super Orchestra
hosted by Brian Nankervis
Collingwood Town Hall, March 26th 8pm
This year the WHOW annual fundraiser will be held at the awesome Caravan Club. The Caravan Club, based at the Oakleigh RSL is a great old style hall with great sound and a fantastic atmosphere and has become the live music venue in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. We are very grateful for their support! Buy tickets here.
Breast Cancer in Bali
Recent statistics on the mortality rates of breast cancer in Australia show that the risk of dying of breast cancer before the age of 85 has decreased from 1 in 29 in 1982 to 1 in 37 in 2007 even though the incidence of breast cancer has been increasing.
In terms of surviving a diagnosis of breast cancer, these figures have also improved. Seven out of 10 women who received a diagnosis of breast cancer in 1982 were still alive 5 years later, while nearly 20 years later nearly 9 out of 10 women diagnosed in 2000 were still alive in 2006.
These improved figures are due to several factors including:
- Early detection through screening programs and through breast awareness education
- Availability of prompt and integrated treatment
- Better treatment.
In Australia, this is available without cost to the individual through the public health system.
In Bali the situation is very different. Firstly, the collection of statistics is fairly crude but the current situation is that less than 1 out of every 2 women currently diagnosed with breast cancer is likely to be alive in 5 years. Professor Trakra Wibawa Manuaba, surgical oncologist at Prima Medika Hospital in Denpasar, says that 70 to 80% of women who are diagnosed in Bali with breast cancer are at stage III and IV meaning spread and much less chance of survival. Many of these women are under 45 years of age. Later stage breast cancer means that surgery is less of an option. Chemotherapy is expensive and not affordable for most. They have a radiotherapy machine but it is “ancient” he says and often broken.
Other than lack of education about breast awareness and the need for different imaging equipment for early detection, many women in Bali through fear and through lack of money to go to hospital resort to alternative medicines . He says that 90% of the women who present at hospital with breast cancer have tried up to 5 different alternative medicine options before coming to see him.
Their needs are so great:
- Education program about breast awareness and about appropriate treatments
- New imaging equipment for early detection
- Funding for chemotherapy
- New Radiotherapy equipment.
The WHO guidelines to the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer are:
- Primary prevention, through public and professional education
- Secondary prevention, through mass and individual screening programs
- Tertiary prevention, through accurate diagnosis and prompt treatment
- Palliation therapy and treatment of incurable cancer and pain management.
Events — Past
Saturday March 24th, 2012
Models Super Orchestra and guests
Another great night hosted by Brian Nankervis and featuring the Models Super Orchestra! The night was a huge success with almost $17000 being raised for improving breast cancer services in Bali!
The Models SuperOrchestra include recent ARIA Hall of Fame Inductees, Sean Kelly, Andrew Duffield and Mark Ferrie from the Models. Also in the band are the fabulous Billy Miller (The Ferrets), Jack Howard (Hunters and Collectors), Cal McAlpine (Large No 12s) and Eve von Bibra (The Chantoozies).
The night was again hosted by Brian Nankervis whose energy and humour abounds as always!
An enormous thank you to all the sponsors, the band, Brian, the Richmond Primary School parents and everyone who attended…..
A very special thank you to the following artists who donated beautiful works of art for auctioning:
Peter Byron, Penelope Metcalf, Mark Schaller, Vietta Korren-Steele, Vivian Ashworth, Sarah Faulkner, Greg Ades, Mark Douglass, Karan Hayman, Mark Howson and Mirka Mora.
A Mother Weeps
A special moment on the night was when Rosamond Pollard sang the song A Mother Weeps.....
Gabby Larkin died aged 16 from an extremely rare and aggressive form of cancer.
Her mother, Patrice, wrote a song as a tribute to her teenage daughter.
The song, “A Mother Weeps”, has been recorded and released as a CD single.
Some of Australia’s most experienced musicians donated their time and talent to make the recording.
Rebecca Barnard on lead vocals is supported by Cal McAlpine (Drums), Mark Ferrie (Bass), Billy Miller (Lead Guitar/Harmony), Sean Kelly (Rhythm Guitar/Harmony), Andrew Duffield (Piano/Harmony) and Jack Howard (Trumpet/Harmony).
Needless to say there were some tears shed around the room.
A very special thanks to Phil and Patrice Larkin for their donation to WHOW of over $1600 from proceeds of the sale of the CD, A Mother Weeps.
Updates & Future events
The last year have seen WHOW receiving support from all sorts of people and organisations:
In May 2012, I attended the Bali Pink Ribbon walk in Nusa Dua in Bali. It was a fabulous day walking with about 500 others through the beautiful gardens and beaches of Nusa Dua.
The day was a great success and gave me a chance to meet all the women who work so hard in Bali trying to improve conditions for women who are diagnosed with breast cancer. It was also an opportunity to hand over $30000 from WHOW.
Recently, Gaye Warren, President of BPR wrote to me:
Bali Pink Ribbon is most grateful for your generous donation of A$ 30,000 last year, which made up just under 50% of our total fundraising figure for 2012. Without the wonderful contribution from WHOW, our major sponsor, we would not have been in a position to establish our Breast Cancer Support Centre, the first of its kind in Indonesia.
The Centre, to be called Pink Ribbon House, will be open to the public in a matter of weeks, once the interior furnishings are completed. BPR will then be in a position to hold free seminars at Pink Ribbon House on women's health and breast checks by doctors of Bali Care Cancer Foundation, together with counselling patients and their families and survivors by trained volunteers, many themselves breast cancer survivors, and therapeutic classes run by volunteers offering yoga, arts and crafts and cookery classes and a wellness and beauty programme. We shall also offer the use of a library and social activities such as visits to places of interest for a day out programme for members.
BPR will be working closely with their medical advisors, Dr Dian Endrawati and Professor Tjakra Manuaba, whom you met at the Pink Ribbon Walk last year, to develop an outreach programme involving training of volunteers to equip them to visit and counsel breast cancer patients living in rural areas as well as the hospital. The doctors will encourage patients to visit us at the Centre. In this respect, as part of our fundraising plans for 2013, BPR hopes to raise sufficient funds for a minibus for transporting patients living outside Denpasar to Pink Ribbon House.....
Thanks for the update Gaye, WHOW will continue to raise money to help in your efforts!!
Saturday May 11th, 2013 – WHOW annual fundraiser at The Caravan Club featuring Models Super Orchestra and guests……For tickets go to trybooking.com or call Sara on 0439 149914.
Friends & Supporters
Andrew Duffield Music
Bali International Women’s Association(BIWA)
Biggin and Scott
Danielle Zanetti Jewels
Dynamic Stability Physiotherapy & Pilates Studio
East Melbourne Psychology
Kate Seddon Landscape Design
Las Ninas Textiles
Lin Van Hek
Monx Love Hairdressing, Richmond
Prima Medika Hospital, Bali
Richmond Hill Cafe & Larder
Salona Greek Restaurant
Suzy Salter and Co. (Bali Residents)
Swan St. Optometrists
The Big Group
Unique Fitness Studio
Wantilan Bali restaurant
Warung Agus restaurant