Walking 35kms is easier when you’re making a difference

Saturday, 4 May 2019

Perth streets will be lined with walkers today, who have collectively raised almost $850,000 for cancer research. 

Nearly 500 women and men are taking part in the annual Hawaiian Walk for Women’s Cancer to raise money for breast and ovarian cancer research at the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research.

Walkers, including ten medical researchers, will either complete a 35km or 42km course starting and finishing at The University of Western Australia.

Shoppers at the Claremont Quarter and the Mezz, owned by WA based property group Hawaiian, can cheer on walkers as they make their way through the centre on Saturday morning. 

Two teams have given a nod to Star Wars Day naming their teams, ‘May the Fourth be With You’ and ‘The Storm Hooters’.  ‘May the Fourth be With You’ is the biggest fundraising team of the event, having raised more than $38,000.

The leading individual fundraiser is cancer survivor Peta-Jane Secrett who was diagnosed with cancer the same week she found she was pregnant. Peta-Jane has raised $24,000.

Each walker has committed to raising $1,000 but Director of the Perkins, Professor Peter Leedman said the vast majority raised far more.

“Every year people go above and beyond in their effort to help the cancer research conducted here in Perth at our laboratories, often because they have felt the tragedy cancer causes and want to help make it a non-lethal disease.  

“We also have people who walk who are undergoing cancer treatment. Their courage and determination to make a difference for others is inspirational.”

“At the Perkins we investigate the major diseases in our community including cancers affecting women, mainly breast and ovarian cancers. We also focus on the hard to treat cancers, such as triple negative breast cancer which doesn’t respond to conventional treatments. 

“We have researchers dedicated to developing better medicines. We have researchers collaborating with biomedical engineers to make life-saving devices and others examining the use of nanoparticles that transport treatments through the blood stream to the cancer.

“Medical research is the only way to make cancer a non-lethal disease and with the help of all our walkers and their supporters, that day will be brought closer,” he said. 

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