Can good really prevail? Can we always rise over adversity? If you’ve read fairy tales, you’ll answer yes to both questions. In a world of kings and queens, of wicked witches, of distorted realms and talking rabbits, the quest to save the princess, to restore order and to find a way home, always eventuates in victory. Why? Because we are all in search of that happily ever after, we cheer the Robin Hoods of this world, who go into battle and resurface unscathed, and more determined than ever.
You see, it is human nature to want to seek out justice, to turn wrong into right. Whether it’s in a Kingdom far far away, or within our communities, our workplace or in the country we call home; the desire for justice is penned in our stories where the valiant and the strong are cast to give us hope, permission to believe, and most importantly, give rise to action. These are the tales that line the shelves, hearts and minds, of the team behind Rare Cancers Australia (RCA), our supporters and our patients.
On Friday 27 October, at the fourth annual Sick or Treat Charity Ball, the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Alice and her Wonderland folk, along with many others, convened at the Sydney Town Hall. Guided by the event’s MC, Mr Ed Phillips, we all listened to an impassioned opening address from RCA’s Head of Patient Care, Kate Vines. Her notion of granting wishes to help 5 year old cancer patient Sophie, stirred the emotions. Her telling of the sad passing of 75 year old Eric, was an all too familiar story, and in that moment, we felt a sense of ownership, that the problems faced by rare cancer patients belonged to all of us. There was a collective realisation that we must better the lives and outcomes of the 52,000 Australians diagnosed each year.
As spirits were raised and hopes lifted, guests were treated to a breathtaking acrobatic act by Julie Cameron. A previous Cirque De Soleil performer, her grace and strength were admired by all and we were inspired to challenge ourselves and move with the same fierceness and purpose. This paved the way for our keynote speaker, RCA’s Chief Executive, Richard Vines.
Richard commended our partners, whom without their support, our hurdles would be greater and our achievements less. He acknowledged RCA’s wins, including the successful PBS listing of Vorinostat, whilst also accepting that there was still a long way to go and so much more to do. He encouraged all to create ripples of change, to stand up, overcome obstacles and make a real difference.
The night was undoubtedly a great success and we share this triumph with Senator Deborah O’Neill, our friends at AbbVie, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb, Genesis Care, Janssen, Montagner Zembrzuski Family Foundation, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, PWC, Roche, our generous prize donors and most importantly our patients. Thank you for your continued and unwavering support.
On a final note, we must remember that, the tales of triumph are within our reach, they dance off the pages waiting for our embrace. And in the face of adversity, we must never let go of the hope and desire for a fairy tale ending. And as the clock strikes midnight, we must not be alarmed, we must continue until that infamous question is posed, and the mirror answers; Australia’s health system is the fairest one of all.
To view photos from the event, click here