Dry July funds pay for patient car, other creature comforts at Tamworth's North West Cancer Centre, Inala House

MOVING ALONG: Shaen Fraser and volunteer driver William Arneman are pleased to have a new vehicle that allows them to reach cancer patients across the region. Photo: Gareth Gardner 100817GGA05

MOVING ALONG: Shaen Fraser and volunteer driver William Arneman are pleased to have a new vehicle that allows them to reach cancer patients across the region. Photo: Gareth Gardner 100817GGA05

IF YOU’VE gone dry for July, you’ll treat a cancer patient to a good cup of coffee, make them feel more at home in the garden, or even help them get to treatment.

North West Cancer Centre/Inala House in Tamworth will receive more than $15,000 from last month’s no-alcohol drive, which spokeswoman Shaen Fraser said was “good stuff” for patients from across the region.

The funds will buy a coffee machine and veggie gardens at Inala House, and also top up the bank account after a car was bought for patients across the region.

“We’ve got a few smaller projects this year that we hope to do, and it’s all about putting money back to the patients to give them things to make their journey a bit more comfortable,” Mrs Fraser said.

Cancer Council, which also provides staff and volunteers to Inala House, had one car for when patients have no other options to get to and from treatment at the cancer centre.

It just bought a second one with last year’s funds to let the volunteer drivers extend the free service to towns such as Gunnedah, Manilla, Walcha and Quirindi.

Mrs Fraser said Joblink Plus partners had been building garden boxes and would soon install them for the enjoyment of Inala House guests, who she said stayed anywhere from three to eight weeks.

“We’re just about to put some vegetable gardens in, because people really miss their gardens when they’re here,” she said.

The other creature comfort coming soon was a coffee machine.

“At Inala House we don’t have a coffee machine, we have good old instant,” Mrs Fraser said.

“We thought we might spend couple of hundred on a machine and have a kitty of money for the pods.” 

Installing Foxtel in the 10 rooms was another project on her radar.

“You never know, different things pop up and it’s good to have this sort of money to spend on patients to keep their lives as normal as possible,” Mrs Fraser said.

WHY DO DRY JULY?

Mrs Fraser said she’d done Dry July four times now, and it was a great exercise for two reasons.

“It feels good to raise that money that you know is being spent right here locally, and seeing the benefits it gives to patients,” she said.

“From a health perspective, it really is good for me personally to [do] that July, mid-year reassessment of health habits. I enjoy that, as well.

“For someone that normally does drink socially regularly, it really makes you aware of how much we do include alcohol in our lives.”

Related:

July 15, 2016: Dry July makes cancer patients’ lives more comfortable

July 2, 2017: Mindful drinking: how to sip less and enjoy it more

The story Dry July buys: cancer patients gain car and coffee first appeared on The Northern Daily Leader.

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