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A Canberran in her 30s is the Star of a National Awareness Campaign, Bravely Sharing her Breast Cancer Journey with Australia

Breast Cancer Network Australia 3 mins read
Sam, centre, with members of the Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) team.

30/04/2024

Sam from Canberra is a mum of five and was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2023 at age 39.

“I found out that I have lobular breast cancer, which changed my whole life,” Sam said. “When you're in your 30s it is really hard – particularly when you're a mum and you have these little people that you have to worry about – you feel like you're alone.”

Sam contacted our free Helpline to share a very confronting experience when she went through airport screening with a breast prosthesis. BCNA subsequently advocated on her behalf, and for many women like her, for better training of security staff across all Australian airports, using Sam’s experience to help inform BCNA’s advocacy for change. 

“They allowed me to have a voice when I didn't know where to turn,” Sam said. “We all deserve to feel that support and that love that BCNA provide.”

“We advocate for change for all Australians affected by breast cancer and work to make a difference for those who yet to be diagnosed,” said BCNA Director of Policy, Advocacy, & Support Services Vicki Durston. “Through the Pink Bun campaign, we're able to continue to advocate for people like Sam and [to help] provide them with treatment, care, and support.”

Sam accessed not only BCNA’s free Helpline but also connected with its Online Network, which is a peer-to-peer forum in which people can reach out to ask questions, feel supported and empowered.

The 2024 Bakers Delight Pink Bun campaign highlights the support network around each Australian with a breast cancer diagnosis through the personal stories of three of our valued BCNA members from across the country, who each speak to their own lived experience.

The faces behind this year's campaign – Kansas, Sam, and Jill – arrived from different states to share their stories and shine a light on how BCNA and its staff have supported each of them through their respective breast cancer experience. Kansas, who was diagnosed at just 24 years of age, drove from rural Victoria to take part. It was BCNA’s Pink Lady Match that reminded her to book in with her GP to get a lump checked. Following the resulting breast cancer diagnosis Kansas relied on BCNA’s online resources including the My Journey app to keep track of symptoms and prepare for medical appointments.

Jill from Perth was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in her early 50s. Jill is just one of our members to have benefitted from BCNA’s advocacy work, as her medication is now subsidised on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). BCNA advocated to the government for this drug to be listed.

“For many, BCNA is that beacon in a very dark time, and a big part of what we do is around awareness and connection and bringing people together,” said BCNA CEO Kirsten Pilatti. “During Pink Bun we see a very small bun make a very big difference for so many people, and with 100% of sales donated directly to BCNA we can genuinely affect change.”

Bakers Delight Joint CEO, Elise Gillespie said the Pink Bun campaign was something she and franchisees around the country looked forward to each year. “This campaign wouldn’t be a success without the generosity and enthusiasm of our franchisees and it’s incredible to see our bakeries turn pink for this special campaign. This year’s campaign theme really focusses on helping BCNA support every Australian affected by breast cancer, so we would encourage customers across Australia to come into their local bakery not only to buy Fun Buns, but to share their own personal stories and connection with breast cancer. It really reinforces why we do this campaign and what it means to our franchisees and local community members.” 

Sam said the Pink Bun campaign is special for people diagnosed with breast cancer. “Who doesn't like a Pink Bun, and while you might think it's a small thing, it actually means an incredible amount for everyone that's experiencing breast cancer,” Sam said. “This May, get a round of Fun Buns to get around BCNA and all those affected by breast cancer.”

So, how can you support this year’s campaign?

With 100% of Fun Bun sales going to BCNA, it’s easy to show your support for our organisation and for those in your community affected by breast cancer. Simply purchase a 6 pack of Fun Buns from your local Bakers Delight May 9 - 29 and take them home to enjoy!

You can also sign-up for a Pink Bun Party. Get your friends, workmates, or family together and pink your way throughout May, with registrations open at pinkbunparties.com

“Our hope at BCNA is that you’ll get around the Bakers Delight Pink Bun campaign in the same way we get around our network and those we serve,” said BCNA CEO Kirsten Pilatti.

 

Media Contact: ________________________________________________________________________

Rachael Stewart | Media and Communications Manager | 03 9805 2540| media@bcna.org.au

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About us:

Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) is the peak national organisation for Australians affected by breast cancer, and consists of a network of more than 175,000 individual members. BCNA supports, informs, represents and connects Australians affected by breast cancer and works to ensure that all Australians affected by breast cancer receive the very best care, treatment and support appropriate to their individual needs.

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