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The Alfred, Melbourne

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$44,557.51 raised

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Join us in the 2018 Dry July campaign in helping support people affected by cancer.

Each year, The Alfred treats thousands of people living with cancer. Alfred Health’s cancer service includes 28 inpatient beds, 18 day procedure units, and a large radiotherapy and chemotherapy centre solely dedicated to treating adult cancer patients.

The Alfred’s cancer services allow for close clinical coordination with a range of cancer specialists, including surgeons, medical oncologists, haematologists, and nursing and allied health specialists.

Since our first Dry July we have seen some remarkable improvements in a number of the areas where our patients and their families spend a considerable amount of time. Thanks to the support generated by our wonderful DJs, we have been able to make these spaces a little brighter and more comfortable.

Patients can now take time out in our relaxing garden, and they also have access to a functional and bright kitchen to make a cup of tea. We have started improvements on our waiting areas and are making significant improvements to specifically cater for our young adult patient cohort. All of these important enhancements would not have been possible without your generous abstinence.

Latest Updates

Dry July is music to the ears at The Alfred!

Music therapy is highly-regarded by medical professionals as a safe way to support people living with life-threatening illness, by providing comfort and relief, and allowing people to explore and express difficult emotions.

And now thanks to the generosity of our Dry July supporters, The Alfred has introduced a special music therapy program for its palliative care patients.

Lucy Forrest is a registered music therapist, researcher and clinical supervisor, and her role with The Alfred’s oncology and palliative care department is completely funded by this amazing community support. Having been involved in oncology and palliative care for more than 20 years, she knows full-well how important music can be to aid someone’s care.

“Music can help in a number of different ways,” she says. “It can provide symptom support when someone has anxiety or pain, is breathless or isn’t sleeping: I can use music to calm and relax, settle and distract them, helping to reduce anxiety and distress.

“Then there is creative music therapy, which is about helping people live fully until the end. They may want to engage in life review, learn to play an instrument, or create a legacy, such as writing a song to leave for a child, a grandchild, or their partner.

“It may also be about just using music to take them out of the space that they are in, so they are not focused solely on their illness. Music can transport people to other times and places, through memories and stories, helping them to re-engage with their well self, and providing opportunities for sharing and support between family members.”

Lucy’s message to those who helped fund her program is one of heartfelt gratitude.

“Thank you! Being able to bring music into people’s lives during difficult times is so important, especially for our palliative care patients and their families,” she says. “Research shows that music can positively impact physiological responses, transform people’s experiences of palliative care, and bring comfort and support. That’s why I love this work, and the opportunity to develop a new program in an amazing place like The Alfred is very exciting.”

The Alfred is committed to providing best practice care which includes the benefits of allied therapies to improve health and well-being but none of this would be possible without your support. A big thank you to everyone who participated in, or supported others, as part of Dry July 2017. Thanks to your generosity and dedication, so many patients, loved ones and carers will benefit from this wonderful program.


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Dry July 2018 - Thank you from 'The Alfred'

Another Dry July over and another remarkable year for The Alfred. Congratulations to everyone who completed their own Dry July challenge, Golden Tickets notwithstanding, and thank you to everyone who sponsored someone, your support is also greatly appreciated.

Each year, we continue to be warmed by the wonderful contribution the community has bestowed upon The Alfred, helping to improve the lives of those dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. You all play a very real role in helping ease the stresses and strains on our patients and for that we cannot thank you enough.

The Alfred looks after many thousands of people living with cancer every year, and we see first-hand the difficult fight that patients and their families face. The changes made possible by Dry July funding have helped to make our patient’s journeys a little brighter and make that battle a little easier. You should be so very proud of the contribution you make in helping to bring about those improvements and provide comfort to those facing a difficult time in their lives.

On behalf of the staff and patients at The Alfred, thank you for your dry efforts, you are amazing!

Bronwen and Lisa (Alfred Health Radiation Oncology reception team and Alfred DJs)


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Alana’s story

"You have cancer in your left breast and will need to have a mastectomy in the next couple of weeks".  

This is something that I never expected to hear. I was 27 years old, didn't have a family history of breast cancer and was heavily pregnant. I felt as though this moment was happening in slow motion. “Cancer? Really?” I looked to my right and saw the tears stream down my husband’s face. Yes, this was happening. This was real.

It was the start of 2017 - I was about 12 week’s pregnant, and noticed a large lump, approximately 6 centimetres in diameter in my left breast. It appeared out of nowhere.

I went to my doctor and she thought it was hormonal. She said to come back in a few weeks; if it changed, an ultrasound would be organised to see what was going on. Nothing changed and I somewhat forgot about it. It wasn't causing me pain, there was no redness – it was nothing that caused concern.

A few months later I was getting closer to being in my third trimester of pregnancy, so I thought it was a good idea to get the lump re-checked, just to ensure it didn't cause issues with breast feeding.

I had the ultrasound which showed some abnormalities, so an urgent appointment was organised with the surgeon. He seemed quite concerned and sent me to the hospital to have a mammogram and biopsies taken. A week later, I received my diagnosis.

From that day, I promised myself that I would make this experience as positive as possible. I would not let this get me. It’s either ‘it’ or me, and I wasn’t going to let ‘it’ win. I have two beautiful girls to live for and a husband that can’t cook ha ha!

It has been a long process; almost a year since my diagnosis and a lot has changed. After giving birth to my second daughter, a single mastectomy, 16 rounds of Chemo, 28 cycles of radiotherapy, seven months into my year long, three weekly treatment of Herceptin, multiple hospital visits, and a lovely visit to ICU for sepsis, I am still standing.

I am due to have further surgery this coming October to have an elective mastectomy on my right breast and complete reconstruction during this procedure. I am totally exhausted, but also grateful. As I recover I continue to plan my future with my husband and children.

Although I look forward to the end of this ordeal, I have met some absolutely amazing people along the way. The Alfred staff have become more like friends, and I truly thank them for keeping me alive. Which is why I am so pleased to be able to support them this Dry July and give something back to the organisation that helped me.

Alana Hall

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A new welcome for patients thanks to Dry July

The Alfred continues to be overwhelmed by the generous community support the hospital received during Dry July. The support has helped to improve a number of well-used areas for patients and their loved ones across the hospital.

Recently, the reception and waiting areas in the Alfred Health Radiation Oncology building were given a new lease of life thanks to the generosity of people going ‘Dry in July’. The upgrade includes: a lower desk, so patients in wheelchairs can interact with reception staff easily; new comfortable furnishings; and a mobile phone bar, so patients, their families and carers can always be contactable (allowing for at least one less worry for patients and loved ones). We hope the new and improved changes will make the space a little more welcoming, functional and, most importantly, comfortable for all who use it. 

Thank you again to the Dry July Foundation for their partnership with The Alfred and to all of the remarkable people across the state who raised funds by abstaining from drinking alcohol throughout July. Your generosity and dedication has helped make life a little better and a littler nicer for people living with cancer.

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Thank you for all your support and participation in Dry July 2017

Congratulations on completing your challenge and thank you again for your magnanimous support of The Alfred this Dry July.

Year after year, we continue to be truly grateful for the amazing contribution the community has bestowed upon the hospital, and we would particularly like to thank each and every one of you for the specific role that you have played in helping ease the stresses and strains on those affected by cancer.

The Alfred looks after many thousands of people living with cancer every year, so we see first-hand the difficult fight that patients and their families face on a daily basis.

We also see the remarkable difference that small changes can make to a patients’ stay, particularly as they endure such a challenging time. And your Dry July efforts have helped make that battle a little easier for some, and for that we are so grateful.

Thanks to the support of Dry July and those of you who have participated, The Alfred has been able to make some really positive changes to improve a number of areas where our patients spend a great deal of time, including a tranquil garden for patients to relax in between treatments and a new kitchen for inpatients and their loved ones to be able to enjoy the simple pleasure of making themselves a cup of tea.

Our gratitude is also extended to everyone who sponsored a Dry July Supporter this year; your remarkable generosity should not go unremarked. On behalf of the staff and patients at The Alfred, thank you!

A/Prof Jeremy Millar (Director Radiation Oncology), Prof Harshal Nandurkar (Director Clinical Haematology) & Michelle Gold (Director of Palliative Care)


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