These FAQ’s are based on questions we have been asked over the years, about how the Pink Finss Charity works.
If you do not live in the Hawkesbury, you are still more than welcome to get in contact with us and attend any of our support group meetings as we understand how important it is to connect with others who know what you are going through.
Whilst we offer additional services like meals, wigs, gardening, cleaners, oncology massage, mental health, financial assistance, etc we are an organisation that is focused primarily on the Hawkesbury and are limited to what funds we have available to us at the time. However, over the years we have developed a great network of contacts and information and we will always endeavour to refer you to other services where possible.
The Cancer Council is an amazing organisation that also offers services (such as transport, cleaning, wigs) in addition to financial assistance and we encourage you to reach out to the Cancer Council to see how they can assist you. Telephone 13 11 20.
Our rooms are located upstairs in the Old Hawkesbury Hospital which is on the corner of Christie and Macquarie Streets Windsor. The actual address is 6 Christie Street. There is a lift just inside the entrance to the building for your convenience.
Parking in Windsor can be limited and it is best to be mindful of the timed parking (the parking police take their job very seriously). There is parking under the Hawkesbury Central Library which is next door. There is both 2 hour and 3 hour parking there. If you are planning to be here longer, several of the side-streets have unlimited parking, ie Christie, Dight, Catherine, and Tebbutt Streets
Absolutely. We understand that attending your first Support Group Meeting can be a little daunting, even though we really do try to make it as welcoming and easy as possible for you. So if you would feel more comfortable bringing a friend or family member, that is fine with us. We would just ask that you let us know, for catering purposes, and its usually best for the Women’s Support Group Meeting to bring a woman, and for the Men’s Support Group Meeting to bring a man. The reason behind this is that we want to ensure the other attendees feel comfortable opening up about their treatment if they wish and we wouldn’t want the person you bring to feel out of place either. We are looking at Mixed Support Group Meetings in the future, which means any type of support person will be fine.
No, we do not charge a fee for anything we do for a person diagnosed with cancer. As a Charity created to help people going through a difficult time in their lives, we do not want to add to that burden or exclude anyone from becoming part of the group. The Support Group Meetings are a key part of what we do, they are a way of encouraging connections with others on a similar journey and they are open to anyone with cancer who wishes to attend, free of charge.
There are a number of organisations in New South Wales that will accept your donation and make it into a wig.
While we do not accept donations of hair, we have had several young women run fundraisers encouraging friends and family to support them before they cut their hair, with the funds coming to the Pink Finss Charity. To do this, click this link and set up a My Cause page. And make sure you let us know, we will be happy to help and promote your fundraiser.
Unfortunately, we just don’t have the ability to accept previously worn wigs, scarves and protheses. If you do have any of these items and wish to donate them, send them to:
Nepean Cancer Wellness Centre
56 Warwick Street
Penrith NSW 2750
The Pink Finss Charity (ABN 91 726 500 2020) has been endorsed for Deductable Gift Recipient since July 2010. This means that donations made to the charity are tax deductable. All donations should receive a receipt which can be used when you lodge your tax return.
The Pink Finss Charity is a Registered Charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC). Click this link to see our ACNC profile
As a grassroots organization, funded largely by the local community, we have always taken every step possible to be transparent in what we do and how we spend any money we receive. That is why we have been audited every year since we began, even before we were required to do so by the ACNC. Our Annual Financial Reports are available on the ACNC website, or you can email us firstname.lastname@example.org to request a copy.
We really appreciate it when people hold their own fundraisers and donate the money to the Charity. It can be a great way to increase your friends understanding of what we do or a way to make a contribute for someone you know who has been diagnosed with cancer.
It is important that we are notified of any event you wish to hold in our name, especially if you are telling people the proceeds are being donated to us. And once we know about your event, we may be able to help with marketing or merchandising material, and promote it on our socials.
We have made it easy if you are planning to run your fundraiser online. We have already set up a My Cause account so you to set up a My Cause page for your event. To learn more click here.
To let us know about your fundraiser, please email email@example.com
Make sure you wear comfortable clothes for chemo and include layers as you can experience changes in body temperature.
Here are a range of items that may help make your time in the chemo chair a little more comfortable.
Mobile / Tablet / Computer to listen to Audiobooks, Podcasts or watch Netflix, Stan etc
- Comfortable headphones
- Long charger cable that will allow you to plug it in. Make sure you label it in case you leave it behind.
- Hand cream
- Snacks – most hospitals will provide some food (Sandwiches, biscuits, etc) but it’s a good idea to bring little things to eat too.
- A light blanket as you may get cold during the infusion.
- Neck pillow
- Socks or slides
- Heat pack – helps to bring veins to the surface if that is an issue and can also be useful during chemo if you feel achy.
Everything on the Chemo list plus a bit more;
- Ear plugs – hospitals can be very noisy
- Eye mask
- Lots of undies
- Disposable wipes
- Plenty of entertainment
Most of our ladies use a clear plastic envelope to keep their most recent paperwork (appointments and referrals).
With the pathology and blood reports, you can ask for a copy to keep in your envelope, especially if you want to keep track of your various levels. JG
At some stage, this envelope may get too full and you can always store the older information in a tub at home. The tub is also good for bigger documents such as scans.
Radiation may cause the skin around the target area to get red, sore and possibly blister or peel. At the moment, the recommended product to use before, during and after radiation is Moo Goo which is widely available. Suggestions include applying it 2 to 3 weeks prior to radiation starting and make sure you cover both your front and back twice a day. It is best not to apply it immediately before radiation.
The effects of radiation on your body may last for a week or so even after your last treatment, so keep applying the Goo.
Many people who lose their hair, also lose their eyebrows and eye lashes, but not everyone.
'I was proactive and decided to get my eyebrows tattoo’d before I started chemo. Wigs and hats can cover up the hair loss but eyebrows are different, and I didn’t want to have to draw them on every time I left the house'. Rachel.
If chemo is giving you a dry mouth, there are a range of Gel moisturizing mouthwashes you can use.
While bicarb of soda mixed with water can help prevent and manage mouth ulcers - ice blocks are good too!
Coming home after that first chemo infusion or operation can be a little daunting just in terms of managing all the medications, doses and times. Writing up a schedule that includes all the detail can be helpful, allowing you or your support people to tick them off once taken. Pill boxes can also be handy as well as setting phone alarms as reminders.
Its also helpful to keep a diary of how you were in the weeks at home between treatment. That way when they ask you how you went with the last session, you will have something to rely on other than your memory.
Ask them whatever you feel you need to know, and never feel silly about asking a question. It’s a good idea to write down your questions and if possible take someone with you to your appointments to make sure you ask all the questions and write down the answers. Alternatively, ask them if its ok if you record the session so you can focus on what they are saying and lesten to it again later for clarity.
Questions specifically for your surgeon may include
- What is the expected recovery time? How long until I can drive?
- What things should I avoid doing and for how long?
- What am I going to look like?
- What about pain management?
- When can I have a shower?
- What about wound care?
- What exercises can I do and when?
The information provided in this website is designed to help people manage their cancer journey and much of it was provided by people who have been diagnosed with cancer and been through treatment. This information is suggestions only and should never be used against Drs orders. The information is general in nature, and is really just designed to give you an idea of what you may be facing. It is important to remember that all cancers, treatments and people can react differently.
There are a number of factors you can use to narrow down your selection of the right surgeon for you.
- Ask a friend/ acquaintance who has already had surgery who they had and about their experience.
- Does the surgeon have experience or specialise in the same area? Ie breast or testicular
- Where does the surgeon operate, which hospital? Is that convenient for you? Does it offer radiation as well if needed?
- In terms of the hospital, it may be worth considering the impact Covid has on that hospital with their management of a possible new outbreak and the separation and continuation of their surgery facilities.
- Most surgeons will have a website of their own, or a page on a practice website. Have a read of their profile and see what you think. If you feel confident with a surgeon, book an appointment.
Remember, after you meet with a surgeon, if you don’t feel like it is the right fit, you can always go to see another one.
The rooms where most people receive their chemo are generally big open rooms with a number of big Lazy Boy type chairs. Each chair will have an IV stand next to it, possibly a table of some sort and a chair for your support person (if allowed). For obvious reasons they are pretty sterile rooms, so you may need to bring something with you that makes you feel good (one of our ladies snuggles up with a blanket that smells like home).