ACT Eden Monaro Cancer Support Group – T/As Rise Above

CommunityEmergency Relief and SafetyHealth Care

To reduce the financial stress that is placed on families when they have a family member undergoing treatment for cancer. By helping to pay for the extra cost, our patients can concentration on their treatment.

The ACT Eden Monaro Cancer Support Group also known as Rise Above has been operating in the ACT, Queanbeyan,  & surrounding communities for 35 years. RA is a small NGO that provides financial assistance to people of all ages with all types of Cancer. The grass roots initiative began when 13 local children with Cancer were unable to afford to attend a CanTeen national camp. This began a cycle of fundraising campaigns to make these children’s wishes possible. It became clear there was a dire community need when Social Workers from The Canberra Hospital & Calvary Hospitals began requesting help for families in the region facing crisis situations.

For the first 15 years the Group was run on a voluntary basis. The small number of patients receiving assistance meant the Group was able to pay for funerals, accommodation, various treatments, scans and day to day bills. By 2001, the workload had increase dramatically and two full time staff members were required to run all administration and fundraisers. To meet the vastly increasing demand of those in need in the community, Rise Above streamlined the funding and services provision to our patients.

Today, Rise Above offer an allocation of $2,500 to our cancer patients. This covers chemotherapy costs, pharmacy accounts, food and drink supplements, food & petrol vouchers and gas & electricity bills. In the case of an adult diagnosed with Cancer not only do they lose their income, but their partner also loses their income to become a career. In most cases the family struggle on sickness benefit payments. When a child is first diagnosed with Cancer the stress is indescribable. There are no paediatric oncology facilities in the area, therefore families must travel to Sydney for treatment. All of this is only further exacerbated when you add in the pressure of a mortgage, day to day expenses, bills, scans, & accommodation.  Rise Above helps alleviates this strain so individuals and families can focus on their health.