Statement on Bushfire Crisis

by Anne Massey 09 Jan 2020

The national bushfire crisis and the devastating impact on people, wildlife and environment in our communities has deeply affected and touched us all. I know each of us is supporting the recovery any way we can – either by donating items, money, or time – and each of us has chosen how best we want to contribute to the healing that has to take place.

Like most Australians, we are heartened by the nation coming together in support of those who need our help: it’s the same ethos that Can Too was founded on and continues on today.

We understand the sensitivities and additional challenges faced in fundraising for cancer research at this time. Unfortunately, cancer does not stop or discriminate in our communities. There are people in bushfire-affected communities who are already on a cancer journey or will be diagnosed following the fires.

In addition, studies have long-linked cancer in firefighters to on-the-job exposure to smoke, chemicals and toxins in a fire crisis. New research, chronicled following the Californian fires, underscores the risks that modern wildfires pose to firefighters’ long-term health. An effect of the bushfire crisis on firefighters and these communities alike, is the possibility of an increased risk of cancer, highlighting a continued need for cancer research for what our firefighters and others may face in the aftermath. If you would like to read more, there is a link to the relevant article in the footer.

So there is still a need to support cancer research for the prevention and cure of cancer. Last month we finalised funding for 11 early-career cancer researchers. The work of the Can Too Foundation to fund Australian cancer researchers, many of whom are early-career researchers, is of continuing importance for the long-term investment into research for the better treatment, diagnosis, control and prevention of cancer for ours and future generations.

We’d like to assist our participants in their current fundraising efforts to support cancer research, and so we’ve extended fundraising deadlines for our programs by an additional 30 days, for programs that finish this financial year. Please speak to your Team Captain, Mentor or our office if you have further questions. Some participants have matched funding for Can Too with a personal donation to bushfire relief, or similar, and you might like to consider doing that.

On behalf of the Can Too family, we sincerely wish you and your loved ones a safe summer at this difficult time. 

With regards,

Anne Massey / Peter McLean
Chair / CEO
Can Too Foundation 

Further reading
'Modern wildland blazes pose new health risks for California’s firefighters'