Volunteer Voice April 2017

National Youth week

Earlier this month, Cancer Council Queensland acknowledged the achievements and contributions of some of our youngest volunteers during National Youth Week.

National Youth Week is the largest celebration of young people on the Australian calendar and provides an opportunity to promote the achievements, vitality and strength of people aged 12 to 25.

This year’s theme was Be Bold, Be Brave, Be You – three things we know our volunteers are.

We are very lucky to have so many young volunteers willing to offer their energy and enthusiasm to Cancer Council Queensland through volunteering, or getting involved in events like Relay For Life and Daffodil Day.

Thank you to our young volunteers for your invaluable contribution to Cancer Council Queensland. Your ideas and outlook are much appreciated and will continue to serve us well into the future.

No-smoking by-laws the next step for a smoke free Queensland

Queenslanders have stepped up the call for a smoke free state – and their voices have been widely heard.

An overwhelming majority of submissions to a State Government review supported the creation of powers by which body corporates can ban smoking in units and apartments.

A total of 321 submissions were made to the Property Law Review, with the highest number of responses received in answer to the question of whether body corporates should have the ability to ban smoking in multi-unit dwellings. The question was addressed by 261 submissions.

Overwhelmingly, Queenslanders want to see progress on tobacco control so that they and their families are protected against the harmful effects of second-hand smoke.

The evidence is unequivocal – bans on smoking are a great way to help smokers quit, and they also prevent our next generation from taking up this lethal habit.

At Cancer Council Queensland we are also gravely concerned by the fact that 200,000 Queensland children live in a home with a current smoker. Broadening bans on smoking to cover units and apartments will provide our kids with much stronger protection – by further encouraging their guardians to quit, and preventing this abuse.

The latest Cancer Council research shows 70 per cent of Queenslanders support a total ban on smoking in multi-unit dwellings, including balconies.

Our data also confirms that at least half of all Queenslanders living in multi-unit dwellings are affected by smoke drift, and the majority are extremely concerned about the health risks.

The evidence is absolutely undeniable – second-hand smoke kills – at least one Queenslander dies every week from exposure to smoke drift, without ever having smoking a cigarette in their life.

We are proud of the Queensland Government for taking a world-leading stance on tobacco control, and we would welcome continuing action by the Attorney-General to adopt the review’s recommendation.

We’re also encouraging Queenslanders to have their say on the recommendations. Community feedback can be submitted before May 5 via justice.qld.gov.au.

Stand with us and make a submission – together, we can create a smoke free future. We will continue our fight for all Queenslanders, all cancers.

Take part in research- Law at the end of life

Cancer Council and QUT are seeking Queenslanders to take part in research examining medical decisions by and for people with terminal illnesses – the first national study of its kind.
The Australian-first study aims to better understand community engagement and decision making about law at the end of life.

The study will be the first attempt to determine the community’s knowledge about law at the end of life, and how that affects the ability of patients and their families to make decisions about treatment.

Interested patients and family members will be offered information on their legal rights and responsibilities in relation to end-of-life decision-making. Adult patients with a terminal illness, and their family members (including bereaved family members) are invited to take part in the national study.

Australian law requires that informed consent about medical treatment be given prior to treatment, and that patients participate in decisions about their healthcare.

However, there are major barriers to this kind of participation, particularly at the end of life.

Making crucial decisions, such as continuing aggressive treatment or entering palliative care, requires knowledge and understanding from patients and carers about their legal rights.

This project seeks to understand the community’s knowledge of law at the end of life, and how that affects the ability of patients and their families to make decisions about treatment.

We’re asking for patients and families affected to take part in our study, to improve understanding of medical decision-making, including what support would assist Australians in making complex decisions.

Queenslanders can find out more by contacting the research team at QUT on 3365 2505, or bp.white@qut.edu.au.

Volunteer profile

The profile picture of Evanthea Tsaoucis

Evanthea Tsaoucis

Volunteer Recruitment Assistant

1. What is your volunteer role?
My role with Cancer Council Queensland is Volunteer Recruitment Assistant

2. How long have you been volunteering with CCQ?
I started volunteering with Cancer Council Queensland in January 2017.

3. Why did you decide to get involved with CCQ?
I had been looking to volunteer and saw this position advertised at university. This role allowed me to utilise skills I had learnt through my university course, and to develop a range of new skills. The fact that I am volunteering for such a reputable organisation makes everything worth it!

4. What do you love most about your volunteer role?
I love that every week there is something different to work on. My staff partner, Marie, has a wealth of knowledge and has taught me a lot during my time with the organisation.

5. What has surprised you in your role?
I thought volunteers at Cancer Council Queensland predominantly provided direct support to cancer patients. However, what has surprised me is the variety of positions available – there really is a volunteer position for everyone!

6. What has been the most inspiring or memorable moment you’ve had since commencing your role?
It’s inspiring that so many people are willing to offer their time. I assisted with recruitment for the Fortitude Valley retail shop and it was great to see the eagerness and drive from the applicants. This was inspiring and made me appreciate my role within the organisation.

7. What is your hope for the future?
I hope that volunteering for Cancer Council Queensland will ultimately assist in achieving their vision of a cancer free future.

8. What would you say to someone who was thinking about volunteering with CCQ?
I would say explore the range of positions that are available, there is something for everyone. Cancer Council Queensland treat their volunteers with the utmost respect, and are a fabulous organisation to volunteer your time with!

9. What do you feel you’ve gained through volunteering for CCQ?
I have gained several skills and have had the opportunity to talk with people from all aspects of life.

Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea

With May just around the corner, we are busy preparing for Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea!

Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea is an opportunity for friends, family or workmates to come together, share a cuppa and some delicious food, and help those affected by cancer.

Last year, through Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea we raised $2.35 million towards cancer research, prevention programs and support services.

Whether you choose to host an event, attend one, or simply support someone you care about, it’s easy to get involved.

The official date for Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea 2017 is Thursday, May 25 but events can be held throughout May and June.

To register or find out more about Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea, visit biggestmorningtea.com.au.