The breast cancer journey is an emotional and physical roller coaster and a breast cancer diagnosis can bring a range of unexpected emotions. Uncertainty and fear for the future, changes in personal and family relationships, a sense of isolation – these are just some of the normal feelings that may be felt when one is diagnosed.
There is also sometimes concern about body image, sexuality and changes in physical appearance that may be challenging issues to cope with for some patients.
Many patients want access to information about their diagnosis and the treatment options. For others, a breast cancer diagnosis may bring financial hardship.
It was these feelings that led our founder, Irene Hendel to set Think Pink on its course today.
When Irene had her second brush with breast cancer in 2003, she underwent daily radiotherapy for six weeks at the William Buckland Radiotherapy Centre at Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital. There she came into contact with many women who were, due to their breast cancer, finding it difficult to hold down their jobs and make ends meet financially. At Think Pink, we refer to these circumstances as “cancer induced poverty”.
It was obvious that these patients needed immediate assistance, so in September 2006, Think Pink became an independent Charitable Foundation with full Australian Tax Office (ATO) endorsed Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status.
Think Pink’s Living Centre is a unique state-of-the-art, independent and non-clinical wellness facility. The Centre was officially opened by The Minister of Health for Victoria, The Hon Daniel Andrews MP on 9th September, 2010.
Since that time The Living Centre has proudly supported hundreds of breast cancer patients and their families each year through its unique and innovative program of activities and services. The Living Centre provides professional and caring holistic support completely free of charge to patients, their families and carers at any stage of their journey with breast cancer.
Moving forward, the Think Pink Foundation is committed to having a Living Centre facility established and operational in every capital city within Australia.
An ambitious plan indeed, but one from which we will not desist until we succeed.