On Friday 30 August 2019, The Kids’ Cancer Project held its annual Sporting Heroes Luncheon at Doltone House on Jones Bay Wharf in Sydney.
This is the fourth year corporate giants have rubbed shoulders with sporting greats to raise funds for kids’ cancer research during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
Photo gallery: 2019 Sporting Heroes Luncheon
Owen Finegan, CEO of the charity and himself a Wallaby legend, set the tone for the afternoon with his wry sense of humour and masterful sledges as a panel of guest speakers revealed behind the scenes dramas of well-known career highlights.
Guests mingled with invited speakers big wave surfer Mark Mathews, former professional rugby league player Bryan Fletcher, Australian dual Olympic athlete Jane Flemming and classic Wallaby Bill Young.
“I look forward to this event every year,” said Finegan. “We always have a fun afternoon talking about what motivated our careers along with what got us into trouble.”
Sportsmanship wasn’t the only topic of the day. The charity supports world-class scientific research to find kinder, more effective cancer treatments for children, and so it was that Dr Geoff McCowage took to the podium.
The Kids’ Cancer Project is currently funding the paediatric oncologist’s innovative research into developing CAR T cell immunotherapy to treat children with relapsed or refractory solid tumours focussing on osteosarcoma, Ewing’s sarcoma, brain tumours and neuroblastoma.
Read more: Behind the science: Dr Geoff McCowage
“Our goal this year was to raise $137,570 - the exact amount Dr McCowage and his colleague Dr Belinda Kramer need to keep the study going for the next 12 months,” said Finegan.
“Unfortunately, we ended up $13,570 shy of our target, so I’m putting the challenge out to see if a philanthropically oriented organisation will dig deep and pick up the short fall,” he said.
To drive the charity’s message, ‘kids with cancer need science’ home even further, Frankie and Denai Kulscar shared the heartbreaking story of their son Hugo who was diagnosed with leukaemia in 2018.
The 13-year-old rugby player is facing a challenging treatment regime but has received overwhelming support of the Coogee Seahorses Junior Rugby Club and his school Waverly College – both have coordinated community fundraising drives to raise money for medical research.
Donating to The Kids’ Cancer Project will ensure the work of Dr McCowage and scientists just like him will continue. But there are myriad ways to give as Finegan explained.
“We also hold a corporate golf day which is great for team building or client entertainment,” said Finegan. “People can call me on 1800 651 158 or email my team for more information about those events at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
The Kids’ Cancer Project would like to thank the 2019 Sporting Heroes Luncheon event partners Goodman Foundation and Biosceptre along with all prize partners for their continued generosity.
Learn about The Kids' Cancer Project corporate fundraising events.