LOCAL LIONS CLUB HELPS FIGHT CHILDREN’S CANCER (2016)
West Pennant Hills Cherrybrook Lions Club and The NSW Lions Public Health Foundation has donated $15,000 to enable the Westmead Children’s Cancer Research Unit (CCRU) to purchase urgently needed equipment used to treat child cancer patients.
The West Pennant Hills Cherrybrook Club is a major donor to the CCRU and its donation this year has enabled them to purchase a new refrigerated centrifuge. The centrifuge machine was desperately needed to replace a machine that had become unuseable through age.
The Research Unit is conducting gene therapy trials on child cancer sufferers and the centrifuge is used to process the patient’s blood. Without a reliable centrifuge the trials cannot proceed. Gene therapy is being developed by researchers to give young cancer patients improved outcomes and cure rates compared to chemotherapy, which has unpleasant side effects.
The Children’s Hospital at Westmead cares for several hundred young cancer patients every year. Of these, more than half are enrolled in clinical trials that provide access to drugs that have been shown to work. This gives young children and their families new hope using the latest treatments.
The Lions Club’s annual charity raffle raises funds to assist the unit’s equipment needs as well as support the dedicated team of researchers continuing their wonderful work to help kids beat the scourge of cancer. During the presentation ceremony, Professor Jennifer Byrne, on behalf of the scientific team, thanked the Lions for their hard work in raising the funds to help their researchers to improve cancer cure rates. Past president Lion Mohan Nanayakkara thanked the community, sponsors, club members, and the NSW Lions Public Health Foundation for its generous support of the Club’s raffle and other fund raising projects in 2014/15.
Lion Ken handing over pink elephants to Westmead Children’s Hospital.