Inverell Breast Cancer Support Group have broadened their reach and ability to help local families after donating $5,000 to Inala House in Tamworth.
Located at the Tamworth hospital, Inala House is an accommodation centre for travelling cancer patients to utilise whilst seeking treatment.
President Trish Keightley said the support group decided to assist Inala House after learning of how many Inverell shire residents use the service.
“Although our group only helps women and children, this is a way it can help everybody, women, men and children from the Inverell shire,” she said.
The $5,000 in funding was accumulated through donations from individuals and groups within the local community.
“We receive a lot of support from the whole district. They are very supportive. Our main priority is assisting individuals in need but if we have excess funds we like to find ways to help everyone,” she said.
Cancer Council NSW New England representative Paul Hobson said after reviewing a dissection of Inala House users, they found unfortunate statistics.
“In the last two financial years there has been around $30,000 of free accommodation provided to Inverell shire residents through Inala House.
“Inverell shire is the highest user from the whole New England area. This funding broadens the helping reach of Inverell Breast Cancer Support as there are people from town who may never reach out to the group using Inala House.”
Support group member and recent user of Inala House, Shirley Horwood, said Inverell was located “just that bit further” meaning residents had to utilise accommodation whilst seeking treatment in Tamworth.
“It is a lovely facility. We should be so thankful to have it, otherwise it would be really difficult for people in the Inverell shire to get down there.
“Usually your treatment goes for five to six weeks every day so there isn’t an option to pop home afterwards,” she said.
Mr Hobson described Inala House as a motel-style accommodation for patients and carers to stay. The house has a common room for people to talk and gather whilst socially interacting with other patients.
“We provide them with breakfast and provide transport to take them to the shops as people can do their own cooking in the kitchen, to make things a little more homely,” he said.
If you, or anyone you know, need assistance whilst on their cancer journey contact Inverell Breast Cancer Support Group on 0411 968 113 or 6721 3753 to find out more.