Bloomhill needs us
Val and Bryan lived for 23 years in North Maleny until about two years ago when they downsized to an over 50’s village. Bryan recently wrote to HT about Bloomhill Cancer Care, which helps and supports many people across the Hinterland, and which needs our help. Here is Bryan and Val’s story.
Three years ago my wife Val was told she had ovarian cancer.
In the first year after the diagnosis Val underwent chemotherapy on a three weekly regime with a major, major operation mid-year. This first year’s treatment was considered very successful. She was then admitted to a further year’s course of Avastin infusion at three weekly intervals.
For all of those two years, Val’s extremely positive and happy attitude (well, relatively happy attitude given the circumstances) was remarkable. At Nambour Hospital and the Sunshine Coast University Hospital, she had lovely caring nurses and an extremely competent oncologist looking after her on every visit. Jokes and smiles all around.
Then the treatment was over! No more regular supportive visits to the nurses or her oncologist, just blood test reviews every three months.
Val had the debilitating feeling of being on her own; that she was cast adrift without any apparent outside support apart from the three monthly checks. It was a terrible feeling of being alone with the underlying thought that cancer can return.
Val’s oncologist had suggested that she join Bloomhill Cancer Care at Buderim for post treatment care and support. So Val did just that and was transformed, no longer “almost alone” in the world of post cancer life.
Bloomhill Cancer Care is a world class, leading edge provider of care and support. Val loves the atmosphere, the experienced cancer nurses and all the other professionals, the volunteers, the companionship and fellowship offered by so many other cancer-touched people. She loves the therapy, the yoga classes, the volunteer run café (try their sausage rolls) and the meditation classes.
Bloomhill is a unique institution, its type not found elsewhere. It is a not-for-profit, self funded organisation, and funding is falling short of the increasing demand, so much so that Bloomhill is facing the prospect of having to turn clients away when they are so clearly in need of support.
In late February in response to a 5,800 signature ”SaveBloomhill” petition, Ted O’Brien, MP for Fairfax, obtained emergency Commonwealth funding of $850,000 over four years. This is good, but it is time now for ongoing government support, for a more sustained commitment, to ensure Bloomhill’s continued existence in this vital field.
I ask you to please email your State member and your Federal member, the two health ministers and the Prime Minister himself in this election year. Ask straight out for help for Bloomhill Cancer Care at Buderim.
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