As you would know, we ran a Pink Day fundraiser over two Sundays last month. Our girls teams ran a super successful cake stall both days, along with raffles, with prizes donated from a multitude of local businesses. And all teams across the club participated by donning some pink and donating to the cause! At the end of the two rounds, our Girls Team Co-ordinator – Michelle Djuma – did a tally, and we managed to raise a whopping $2200!!!! This was a fantastic effort, and a cause the club was really happy to take part in.
You see, one of our club families had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. Jen was the reason behind the fundraiser, and on Sunday night, she and her family thanked the club for their efforts and generosity. As well as that, Jen’s partner Andrew wanted to share his letter of thanks……
Dear Ferntree Gully Eagles Football Club Committee, Team Managers and Members.
This email is in thanks and recognition of the generous and great effort the Club and it’s Members put in and achieved in raising funds for us.
In particular, we would like to recognise Michelle, the Team Manager of the Girls Under 16’s team who coordinated all of the fundraising and orchestrated all of the ‘behind the scenes’ necessary work. When Michelle advised us about the fundraising idea, we were simply overwhelmed. It really is an incredible gesture and speaks volumes for the Values of the Club.
As you may be aware, we have decided to donate the funds raised to a charity whose purpose is dear to our hearts and very relevant for all of the girls and women, associated with the club. The following will give you more background to this:
Jen is 47 years old. After her mum was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer last year, Jen decided to have a mammogram. The result: “all clear”.
Despite this, for some reason I became conscious of the need to check her breasts. Within weeks of the “all clear” I noticed a lump which was concerning. Jen was not worried – she’d had the “all clear”. We knew nothing about “mammographic density” and the potential inaccuracies of having a mammogram – which is the only reason why breast screening isn’t advocated for women under 50!
Anyway, I kept nagging her and finally she agreed to get an ultrasound in February this year – result: she had 2 tumours. One was aggressive. Within days she was having surgery and we’re now into the fourth month of chemo, with more surgery to follow, then radiation and hopefully a she gets a real “all clear” after that early next year.
Between us though we have 3 daughters aged 24, 21 and 15. We have sisters, cousins, friends and colleagues, most under the age of 50 – and with a virtual 100% ignorance of the need to ‘check your boobs’, let alone what mammographic density is.
We thus want to increase awareness – for all women and girls to be aware of the need to check their breasts on a regular basis and quickly tell their doctor if there’s been any noticeable change since the last check. It’s a very similar process to checking spots on you for skin cancer.
The Love Your Sister charity is certainly helping raise this awareness. It also appears to be a charity which is in touch with the younger generations and utilising social media accordingly. We know with this Charity that the $2000 will be used to help raise awareness.
So whilst your intent was to help us with Jen’s journey, we’re really comfortable (and driven) in knowing that we’re doing whatever we can to ‘prevent’ others going through the same challenges as us. We’re sure you’ll agree.
Thanks again for all of your generosity, efforts and hard work. It is incredibly appreciated.
Andrew Simpson on behalf of Taylor Wickham’s family: particularly mum Jen.
FROM EVERYONE AT THE CLUB JEN – WE WISH YOU WELL, AND THE STRENGTH TO KICK THIS CANCER IN THE BUTT! XXX