Few people see the financial stress cancer puts on families more than oncology nurse Carolynn Hodder but she’s confident their situation isn’t helpless.
Cowra Community Chest’s fundraising drive for cancer patients this year will make a dramatic improvement in their lives, she said.
Ms Hodder, Cowra’s 2013 Citizen of the Year, said patients and their families feel hopeless as disease increases their bills but reduces their income.
“If you look at the person as a whole, there’s a person with a family, with a disease they don’t want. Then there’s the stress of finances. It’s almost enough to tip you over the edge,” she said.
“The stress on patients and their partners is enormous.”
The Community Chest relieves pressure on families by helping cover expenses, she said.
Seventy per cent of people who asked the Chest for help last year were cancer patients, while 85 per cent of money it donated was used to support them.
“If there is a body of funds the community knows is there, it has to be a good thing,” Ms Hodder said.
Member Kaye Chapman said the group will raise as much money as possible during its Cancer Care Appeal over the next 12 months.
It encourages locals to hold raffles, cake stalls, morning teas, garage sales and other fundraisers for the cause and register them with the group.
Any donations can be mailed to Cowra Community Chest, PO Box 208, Cowra, NSW 2794 or delivered to Shop 7, Piccadilly Arcade, Kendal St on Thursdays.
To learn more or contribute ideas call 0428 462 837 or join the Cowra Community Chest for its next appeal meeting starting 6pm on February 26 at its new Piccadilly Arcade office.