STAWELL - Kerrie Skene was among nearly 300 breast cancer survivors who joined forces in Sydney for a national breast cancer summit hosted by Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA).
The summit held on August 8 and 9, brought together hundreds of women from across Australia who are breast cancer support leaders in their local communities.
Ms Skene said she came away from the summit with increased confidence, renewed enthusiasm and new-found skills to support locals.
"The national summit offered information and inspiration as well as some practical ideas and resources to take back to the Stawell community," she said.
"Local breast cancer groups are a great source of support for women dealing with breast cancer, and are powered by local survivors who volunteer their own time."
BCNA's national summit aimed to build skills, knowledge and connections among group representatives and individuals who support women and families affected by breast cancer in their local area.
BCNA CEO Maxine Morand described the women as, "the heart of our national support network".
"They give so much to their local communities. It's a privilege to work with them and help build their capacity to continue supporting women and families affected by breast cancer around Australia," she said.
The theme for BCNA's national summit was support, connect, and grow.
Delegates heard from some of Australia's leading breast cancer experts on the latest in treatment, care and peer support.
They also had an invaluable opportunity to network, share their experiences, and learn from each other.
BCNA is the peak national organisation representing Australians affected by breast cancer and links together more than 80,000 individuals and 300 community support groups, including Stawell Breast Cancer Support Group, providing a network of support and information for those affected by breast cancer.
The national summit focused on practical issues and aimed to build women's skills in running sustainable and effective support groups.
Session topics included living with the effects of breast cancer, the impact of a diagnosis on families, and dealing with loss and grief.
Olympian and BCNA ambassador Raelene Boyle gave an inspiring motivational speech, and other keynote speakers included professor Kerryn Phelps, professor Fran Boyle, Dr Craig Hassed and professor Jane Turner.
Incredible energy was generated among the women at the national summit and they left feeling uplifted.
For further information about Stawell breast cancer support group, please contact Kerrie 5358 7400 or visit www.bcna.org.au.