The Beacon March FY23




Triple negative breast cancer resources


Letter from the CEO


W elcome to the first edition of The experience, or how they navigated not having the support they may have needed. BCNA member Glenda describes her experience of different levels of support throughout her first breast cancer diagnosis in 1996 while living in regional Australia and compares this to her second diagnosis 26 years later. We speak to Dr Charlotte Tottman about why support may look different for everyone and get a sneak peek into an exciting upcoming launch. We also hear from three women who talk about not receiving the support they needed during difficult times and how they overcame this. Beacon for 2023. In this edition, we hear from several of our members about the support they received during and beyond their breast cancer Towards the end of last year, we launched our new- look Online Network . The platform now has improved navigation to ensure our online users have the best possible experience. The Online Network provides a space to connect to others, ask questions and hear experiences. If you aren’t part of the community already, I’d highly recommend you read the article on page 3, which explains the updates to the site, as well as how you can join. This year we will be celebrating 25 years of BCNA. Not only do we want to celebrate our achievements, we also want to celebrate you, our network. With you, we have come such a long way since Lyn Swinburne started BCNA in 1998, envisaging an organisation that would positively influence the way breast cancer was perceived in the community. Now, we have built a strong, resilient and engaging network of over 175,000 individuals. Keep your eye on our website , our social media posts and the next edition of The Beacon to hear more about the big impacts we have made over the past 25 years. We have already kicked off this year with a number of events. Our consumer representatives were involved in our first Think Tank event (read more on page 3) and Elsternwick Park in Melbourne turned pink a few weekends ago for Carman’s Fun Run (see images on page 18). We also held our first digital event, Managing stress and improving wellbeing with mindfulness and meditation , in which we were joined by Professor Craig Hassed OAM, Dr Emma Warnecke and BCNA member Iris Bar. If you weren’t able to join us live or would like to watch the event again, you can access the video via the BCNA website . Last year we were thrilled to bring back our Information Forums, which enabled us to connect with our communities in Rockhampton, Launceston and Ballarat, as well as hosting an online event for those in Wagga Wagga and surrounding areas. We are looking forward to heading over to Port Lincoln in March for






Accepting all the help you can get

In conversation with Shananne and Kate: Under 40 and experiencing breast cancer


What helps when you don’t have much support


Ask the Expert: Support needs after a diagnosis


10-11 Then and now: How support has changed 12-13 Tough enough to wear pink and walk the talk with BCNA

Triple negative breast cancer with Dr Nick Zdenkowski

our first Information Forum for the year– we hope to see you there! There will be more information about upcoming Forum locations by email, social media and on our website . After much anticipation, we have confirmed, in collaboration with Melbourne Football Club and the MCG, that the Field of Women will be staged prior to the AFL Round 23 Melbourne v Hawthorn game at the MCG in late August. On page 16 and 17 we share more exciting updates, including that our Foundation Partner Bakers Delight and Major Partner Red Energy have signed on as our major event partners. Plus, on page 19 you’ll hear about the Pink Bun campaign that will be launching in May. March is Lymphoedema Awareness Month and 3 March is Triple Negative Breast Cancer Awareness Day. BCNA has a range of resources on these topics in various formats, including those on page 2. If you would like more information, call BCNA’s Helpline on 1800 500 258 or email Please note that we have recently updated this email address. While this year is already off to a busy start, remember that it’s okay to take it day by day. BCNA is here to support, connect and empower you every step along the way. We hope you can join us as we celebrate this milestone year and our incredible network. Together we have already achieved so much, and we’re sure there will be many more achievements to come.

14-15 Breast cancer

researchers embracing the voice of BCNA consumer representatives

Triple negative breast cancer Types and subtypes of breast cancer Triple negative metastatic breast cancer treatment

16-17 BCNA’s 6th Field of Women is back!


Around the Network


Fundraising activity

Lymphoedema resources

March 2022 edition - Ask the expert: Lymphoedema (pages 16–17)


Breast Cancer Network Australia Level 1, 293 Camberwell Road, Camberwell VIC 3124 1800 500 258 Editor: Amelia Cox Designer: Justin Dymott Contributors:  Jeanie Watson, Lisa Berger and Ruth Williams

Living well with lymphoedema with Maree O’Connor

Lymphoedema and breast cancer Treatment for lymphoedema Reducing your risk of lymphoedema

Kirsten Pilatti Chief Executive Officer



March 2023 | Issue 94

Breast Cancer Network Australia

Issue 94 | March 2023

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