There’s simply no way to describe the impact some people have on our community – Urunga’s Bernadette Joyce was one of them.
It’s a year since the ‘mother to many’ passed away from cancer and on Thursday, March 23 at Coffs Harbour High School, her daughter and teacher, Amanda aims to commemorate her mother’s life by helping save others.
“I started on my own, making the decision to shave on the first anniversary of losing my mum to cancer,” Amanda said.
“I decided that if I could contribute in some way to ensure that no family ever has to go through what we are, then it was totally worth it.”
But if Amanda thought she was doing it alone, well that was never going to happen.
Hearing of her plan, close friends and Shire locals Mark and Adele Hayne approached Amanda and told her “we would also like to shave in memory of your mum”.
“And then Luke Sharkey said the same,” Amanda said.
“So I formed the team ‘Mother to Many’ – because that's what my mum was.
“We have run fundraisers at the Urunga Markets, including a hundred-club and a raffle, which many local businesses have donated prizes for including Anchor’s Wharf, the Old Butter Factory Cafe, East Garden Restaurant (at the Urunga Bowling Club), Eve’s Beauty, Urunga Golf Club, Urunga Pharmacy, and Urunga Post Office.
“We have run hundred-clubs at the Urunga Golf Club and the Ocean View Hotel … and so far our combined fundraising total is more than $5000.”
Amanda said there is a barbecue on Thursday and people can also donate to the team at:
The Leukaemia Foundation’s World’s Greatest Shave began back in 1998 and is now one of Australia’s biggest fundraising events. This year it aims to raise $17 million.
Money raised from the World’s Greatest Shave helps to fund vital research that will assist more people survive blood cancers like Lymphoma, Leukaemia and Myeloma, while also improving their quality of life by giving families facing blood cancer the emotional and practical support they need.
More than 60,000 Australians are living with blood cancer or related disorders, and every day another 35 people will be diagnosed.