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Light the Night in your own special way this year

Light the Night in your own special way this year

Those of you who’ve been part of Light the Night over the years, know what an incredible experience it is.  The connection with others.  Shared lived experiences.  United in hope.  It takes your breath away.

A family holding Light the Night lanterns, gathered in their backyard at night
Light the Night in your own special way this year

In a year like no other, Australia’s most beautiful blood cancer community event has been thoughtfully re-imagined to allow us to come together in a new and wonderful way.

This year, you are invited to shine a light on blood cancer in your own special way by hosting a twilight gathering with your loved ones on Saturday, 10 October.

How you choose to Light the Night is limited only by your imagination. A family dinner party, a sunset barbeque with close friends…a twilight picnic in the backyard? It’s up to you!

As darkness falls – you will be part of the official lantern lighting ceremony that will take place in thousands of homes across Australia at the same moment via video stream.

Light your lantern…

Illustration of a white lanternIn honour of your own blood cancer journey

Illustration of a yellow lantern

In memory of a loved one lost

Illustration of a blue lantern

In support of those affected by blood cancer

Be part of this very special Light the Night.  Sign up to host a Light the night for your loved ones at

Heartfelt thanks to Bridgestone Australia for their 12th year as Light the Night Principal Partner, unwaveringly supporting Australians with blood cancer for over 34 years.

How your support is inspiring others to give

How your support is inspiring others to give!

When the generosity of Leukaemia Foundation supporters helped provide emergency accommodation and the trusted support of Blood Cancer Support Coordinators to the Hughes family, they wanted to find a special way to say thank you.

Courtney and Kate in Courtney's hospital room during treatment
Sisters Courtney and Kate Hughes. Kate was Courtney’s donor for her stem cell transplant.

Sisters Courtney, Kate and Anneliese were so grateful for the kindness of supporters that they were inspired to give back to the blood cancer community. They wanted to help others feel as supported as they do, while 30-year-old Courtney is undergoing blood cancer treatment.

Knowing first-hand just how valuable this personalised support is for families like theirs, all three sisters recently took part in Dry July to fund more Blood Cancer Support Coordinators across the country.

“The Leukaemia Foundation are the angels that softened the blow for me. We didn’t know what we were in for and the help we have been given is amazing.”

Dry July logo“Not only have they been there for me throughout this experience, they have supported my amazing sister Kate too, who has been my stem cell donor,” explains Courtney.

“Dry July has been a positive way for us to give other families facing blood cancer the support we know makes such a difference.”

The Leukaemia Foundation is proud to be a major beneficiary of the Dry July campaign. Thank you Dry July Foundation – and dry Aussies like the Hughes sisters – for funding our Australia-wide network of Blood Cancer Support Coordinators.

Go Dry this July and help blood cancer patients when they need it most

Go Dry this July and help blood cancer patients when they need it most

Monday May 25, 2020

The Leukaemia Foundation is proud to announce it will once again be one of the charity beneficiaries of the Dry July Foundation for the Dry July 2020 campaign. Funds raised will help to support the vital work of Blood Cancer Support Coordinators across the country.

Every day, 41 Australian men, women and children will learn they have a blood cancer such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma. Blood cancer is one of the most common, costly and fatal cancers in Australia. There are no screening programs available for blood cancers, and there is no way to prevent blood cancer through lifestyle change.

Acting General Manager of Fundraising Rachael Lance said Blood Cancer Support Coordinators were a crucial part of the Leukaemia Foundation’s front line support service, providing Australians living with blood cancer access to the right information, the best treatments, the latest trials and diagnostic tools and the best supportive care services to help people not just to survive – but also to live well.

“The Leukaemia Foundation’s team of Blood Cancer Support Coordinators ensure that Australians diagnosed with a blood cancer have someone to turn to when they need it the most, no matter where they live,” Ms Lance said.

This is the third year the Leukaemia Foundation will be a charity beneficiary of the Dry July Foundation. Funds raised through Dry July this year are even more important in 2020 as the Leukaemia Foundation continues to battle a rising demand for its services amid the current COVID-19 pandemic.

”Dry July Foundation is proud to be working with the Leukaemia Foundation again this year, to help fund their vital Blood Cancer Support Coordinators,” said Brett Macdonald, CEO and Co-Founder, Dry July Foundation.

”People affected by blood cancer need our support now, more than ever. By going Dry this July, participants will be doing something positive for their own health, while raising funds to support people affected by blood cancer.”

Recent research has also suggested patients with blood cancers were not only at higher fatality risk if they contracted COVID-19 (6-11 per cent)[1], but they also experienced worse symptoms. The fatality rate in people living with blood cancer with COVID-19 was also the highest in cancer compromised patients (33 per cent)[2].

“Australian blood cancer patients need us now more than ever,” Ms Lance said.

“Unfortunately, blood cancer doesn’t stop for a global pandemic and neither do the needs of people living with blood cancer,” she said.

“We know times are tough, and we hope Australians will take up the challenge in any way they can to help ensure no-one with blood cancer is ever alone, and that our Blood Cancer Support Coordinators will always be there to offer help, every step of the way.”

To sign up to Dry July and support the Leukaemia Foundation go to


About Dry July

Dry July is a national fundraiser that challenges Australians to go alcohol-free for the month of July while raising funds for people affected by cancer. Run by the Dry July Foundation, funds raised through the Dry July campaign go towards cancer support organisations across Australia, to help improve patient comfort, care and wellbeing.

[1] Wenhua Liang,Weijie Guan,Ruchong Chen et al. Cancer patients in SARS-CoV-2 infection: a nationwide analysis in China. The Lancet Oncology Mar 2020 DOI:

[2] Hui Li, Liang Liu, Dingyu Zhang et al. SARS-CoV-2 and viral sepsis: observations and hypotheses. The Lancet. Published online April 17, 2020

Subscribe to receive the Leukaemia Foundation’s news and updates here.

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Wednesday 11 March 2020
Australia’s only national charity dedicated to help cure and conquer blood cancer, the Leukaemia Foundation officially kick starts the 22nd World’s Greatest Shave across the country from Wednesday 11 March.

This year, the event aims to raise $16.5 million to provide vital support for the 41 Australians diagnosed with blood cancer every day – that’s one person diagnosed with leukaemia, lymphoma, myeloma and other related blood disorders every 36 minutes.

Blood cancers are among the most frequently diagnosed and most deadly cancers in Australia. The latest statistics confirm that one in 10 Australians diagnosed with cancer will have a blood cancer, and approximately one in seven cancer deaths in Australia will be due to blood cancer[i]Open this document with ReadSpeaker docReader.

Leukaemia Foundation CEO Bill Petch said over the past decade, the incidence of blood cancer has grown by around 30%.

“We know that blood cancer is a significant problem in Australia. It doesn’t discriminate, it can develop in anyone, of any age, in any territory and at any time. Unlike other cancers, there are no screening programs available and no way to prevent a blood cancer through lifestyle change, ” Mr Petch said.

“Money raised through the World’s Greatest Shave is critical to ensure that Australians diagnosed with this deadly disease can gain the access they need to the best treatment, supportive care and trusted relevant information, regardless of where they live in Australia,” he said.

As the Leukaemia Foundation’s primary fundraising campaign, the World’s Greatest Shave continues to support and make a significant difference for Australians living with blood cancer. All of the Leukaemia Foundation support services including emotional, information, financial and practical support continue to be provided at no cost.

Last year alone, over 52,000 nights of accommodation were provided to ensure regional families have a home-away-from-home when needing to relocate to a major city for their vital treatment and close to 30,000 patient transport services were provided to and from medical appointments and cancer treatments.

With the support of the Federal Minister for Health Greg Hunt, the Leukaemia Foundation also established Australia’s first National Blood Cancer Taskforce, which includes 30 of Australia’s leading blood cancer experts and stakeholders. This year, the Taskforce will deliver Australia’s first National Strategic Action Plan for Blood Cancer, an evidence-based blueprint to improve survival and quality of life outcomes for people living with blood cancer.

“Thank you to everyone taking part in the World’s Greatest Shave for your support and generosity. Your brave acts of shaving, cutting and colouring your hair make a significant difference to Australian men, women and children living with blood cancer. We can’t do this without you!” continued Mr Petch.

It’s not too late to sign up or support this year’s Leukaemia Foundation’s fundraising efforts, simply download the World’s Greatest Shave app, sign up online at or call 1800 500 088 for more information.

ABOUT World’s Greatest Shave

WHATThe Leukaemia Foundation’s World’s Greatest Shave began 22 years go in Lismore NSW and was inspired by a daughter’s love for her father who was battling leukaemia. Today, the event is one of Australia’s most-loved fundraising events. Every year, extraordinary Australians sign up to shave, cut or colour their hair to raise vital funds for the campaign.

Over the past three years, the Leukaemia Foundation’s World’s Greatest Shave has seen a significant increase in women stepping up and ‘rocking a shave’, a courageous and selfless act to support family, friends and loved ones affected by blood cancer. In 2020, this trend is set to continue with women making up close to 50% of all people registered to shave their head and embrace their bald beauty.

WHYBlood cancer is one of the most common cause of cancer death in Australia, claiming more lives than breast cancer or melanoma. Funds raised will help support local families affected by blood cancer through advocating for equal access to new therapies and treatments as well as providing educational, emotional and practical support such as transport and accommodation. All support and services are provided free of charge.

WHOOver 2 million people have participated in the World’s Greatest Shave. Some have a personal connection to blood cancer while others take part to challenge themselves for the greater good.

WHEN: World’s Greatest Shave event takes place during March 11 – 15, however you can sign up, participate or sponsor at any time during the year.

WHEREAcross Australia at home, work, school and in public community locations (see for a list of local places to join)

HOWSign up now at or call 1800 500 088

WHAT’S NEWOver 30,000 kilograms of hair is estimated to have been shaved and cut over 20 years. With ponytails over 20cm long going back to make wigs for cancer patients, in 2020 the World’s Greatest Shave has partnered with Sustainable Salons ANZ to ensure all hair can be re-used, with shorter hair donated to be used in ‘hair booms’ to soak up oil spills in ocean waters.

FUN FACTHundreds of sporting champions and celebrities have shaved, cut or coloured their hair throwing their support alongside every day Australians including Kerrie-Anne Kennerley, Steve Irwin with his family, Larry Emdur, Tex Walker, Shane Crawford, Andrew Symonds, Meshel Laurie, Channel 9’s The Block, Steve O’Donnell and Chantelle Ford (Blockheads), Radio HIT105 Breakfast presenter Abby Coleman and ABC Breakfast TV presenters Paul Kennedy and Nate Byrne.

[i]Open this document with ReadSpeaker docReader [i]

Aussies urged to answer the call

Aussies urged to answer the call

Thursday 5 December 2019

Aussies who dare take on the world’s top obstacle race course can now rise to the challenge of supporting those facing one of the toughest battles of all, with the Leukaemia Foundation combining forces with Spartan Race to tackle blood cancer.

For the first time ever, Spartans taking to the starting line of Spartan Race events Australia wide have a chance to join the Leukaemia Foundation’s Team Beat Blood Cancer and channel their sweat and tears into fundraising to help see zero lives lost to the complex set of diseases by 2035.

A report recently released by the Leukaemia Foundation found that by 2035, 275,000 Australians will be living with blood cancer – more than double the number of people battling these diseases today. It also shows that up to 186,000 people may die as a result of blood cancer over the next 16 years.

Leukaemia Foundation CEO Bill Petch said funds raised by generous Australians who dedicate their Spartan Race to people facing a blood cancer diagnosis would help meet the growing demand on vital patient services and support the Leukaemia Foundation to continue to fund ground-breaking blood cancer research.

“Funds raised by Spartans competing for Team Beat Blood Cancer are critical to help the Leukaemia Foundation continue to support Australian families affected by blood cancer through advocating for equal access to new therapies and treatments as well as providing educational, emotional and practical support such as transport and accommodation,” he said.

“This is a chance for Australians to truly answer the call to greatness, not only for themselves, but in support of the 41 children, adults, parents and grandparents diagnosed with blood cancer every day.”

Harnessing the fastest growing participant sport in the world, Spartan Australia is innovating obstacle racing on a global scale, running more than 130 races around the world annually, including three core Spartan Races each escalating in distance, obstacle count and challenge level.

Spartan Australia Managing Director Chris Heverin said: “Spartans pride themselves on resilience staring down a course riddled with challenges including barbed wire, walls, rope and heights. But overcoming a blood cancer diagnosis was another challenge entirely and one that no Australian should have to face. And now every Spartan has the chance to personally change lives and make a difference themselves by signing up to race for the Leukaemia Foundation and joining the fight against blood cancer.

“We also encourage all Leukaemia Foundation supporters, looking for a way to shake up their fitness routine or chasing an adrenaline rush you won’t soon forget, to challenge themselves by signing up for a Spartan Race and raise funds to help change lives.

“Whether you’re a fitness fanatic, a reluctant gym goer or haven’t broken a sweat in years, there’s a race type for you, and that means there’s an opportunity to play your part in supporting Australians battling these diseases,” Mr Heverin said.

There are six chances to race for Team Beat Blood Cancer at Spartan Australia events:

  • 7 December 2019 – Melbourne City, VIC
  • 7 March 2020 – Oberon, NSW
  • 28 March 2020 – Melbourne, VIC
  • 7 April 2020 – Latrobe Valley, VIC
  • 9 May 2020 – Port Stephens, NSW
  • 6 June 2020 – Sunshine Coast, QLD

To register for Team Beat Blood Cancer to race for the Leukaemia Foundation or for more information, visit

To find out more about Spartan Australia, visit