“Feel the Magic ” supporting bereaved children

At CRBF we are always looking to partner with like minded organisations whose work can assist our patients and families.  One such organisation is Feel the Magic.  Cooper’s older brother Mitch has been a voluntary mentor at Camp Magic for almost four years whilst studying to become a clinical psychologist.  Suffice to say, he always returns from camps telling us how much he takes away from the experience.

Feel the Magic is an Australian charity providing early intervention grief education programs for kids aged 7 to 17, who are experiencing pain and isolation due to the death of a parent, guardian, or sibling. Our aim is to create a world where grieving kids and their families feel supported, empowered, and can begin to move forward with their lives.

1 in every 20 children aged 7-17 will experience the death of a parent . In Australia, just over 300,000 children will lose a parent before they reach the age of 18. To put this into perspective, there is most likely a child grieving the loss of a parent in every class at school. In addition to this, children also experience sibling and legal guardian loss. Grieving children who have experienced the death of someone they love can feel isolated and alone. They require ongoing support in developing strategies to cope with and move forward with their lives following a loss.

At Feel the Magic their  evidence-based programs have been developed by a clinical psychologist and are delivered by trained professionals. Programs follow a structured psychoeducational framework to increase confidence and self-respect, teaching practical coping strategies to grieve in a healthy & positive way. Feel the magic aims to reduce the mental health challenges associated with childhood grief. Bereaved young people commonly suffer challenges including anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation , which contributes to the nearly one quarter of young people in Australia who experience some form of mental health challenge .


To read more about the outstanding work of Feel the Magic, or to enquire about enrolment, go to https://feelthemagic.org.au/

National Volunteer Week May 16-22, 2022

Volunteers.  The very heartbeat of the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation.

How do we ever thank you enough for the countless hours you dedicate to the cause, your high level skill & expertise and the endless support you provide free of charge to the sarcoma community nationally?

As a 100% voluntarily run organisation, we continue to be humbled by those who work tirelessly behind the scenes, and who are the very pulse of not for profits like CRBF.

Thank you from the bottom of our heart(s) for brightening the lives of those living with a sarcoma diagnosis.

International Nurses Day 12th May, 2022

How do we ever begin to thank the nursing staff who are the heartbeat of our hospitals?

In particular, as a sarcoma organisation, we would like to highlight the national network of truly remarkable sarcoma nurse consultants and specialist nurses,  who help sarcoma patients daily to navigate the uncertain waters of their diagnosis.

Finally we would like to recognise the outstanding work of our own Keith Cox, OAM, for five decades of nursing, predominantly  as an oncology nurse and nursing practitioner.  To gain a valuable insight into the life of a nurse, Keith’s book is being launched today at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse, and is available through  Pan Macmillan.

“When you’re a nurse, you know that every day you will touch a life or a life will touch yours.” —Unknown

The annual CRBF Mother’s Day Breakfast 6th May, 2022

The Guest House at the Park Hyatt Sydney was bathed in morning sunshine, as guests arrived to our spectacular harbourside venue for the 2022 Mother’s Day Breakfast, supported by The Abouhaidar family and Secure Agility.

A combination of new and very familiar faces began to fill the room, while the beautiful tones of the uber talented Jarrad Sapsford and Marc Chami embraced each guest as they arrived.

Guest host for the morning was to be fabulous Melissa Hoyer, despite her best efforts, was very unwell the night before, and therefore unable to join us.  Her co-host Mitchell Rice-Brading went solo and took the event in his stride, delivering a very professional finished result, and delighting our guests once more with his humour, sensitivity and the ability to think on his feet.

Breakfast canapes consisting of a selection of organic yoghurt & granola cereal shots with berries, anti-oxidant smoothie shots, navette bread, tomato & mozzarella di Buffala and fresh basil, smoked salmon and horseradish cream, charcoal and sesame bun, Croque croissant, smoked ham & Emmental cheese, scrambled eggs, sour dough crumble were served.

During the breakfast service our guests were treated to a highlight performance from our young musicians, of Ed Sheeran’s Visiting Hours. Jarrad and Marc have performed from our first breakfast, and have put their hand up each year to continue the tradition.  This year Marc, a medical student at UNSW was forced to leave early for hospital rounds which illustrates the level of commitment these young men have to this event each year.

Keynote speaker, Elizabeth Egan then took to the podium and delivered a heartfelt and raw account of Mother’s Day without her precious daughter Anya, taken at nineteen with osteosarcoma.  Liz embodies the courage and poise of the remarkable woman she is, and her words at the Mother’s Day event were as impactful as they were heartbreaking.  There was silence in the room as Liz eloquently imparted to our guests, the unimaginable tragedy of losing her daughter Anya at age nineteen, and bravely outlining the driving force of what lies ahead for the family in the wake of Anya’s passing.

Liz and her partner Will Winters, and their children Alex, Annie, Alice and Hugh, have founded the 19 for Nineteen challenge to raise funds for osteosarcoma specific research under the auspices of Dr Emmy Fleuren at the CCIA.  Details for donations and how to participate can be found at https://www.tourderocks.com.au/19-for-19

Liz’s poignant speech was followed by “A Caring Life” panel hosted by Nine media personality and the most personable man in Australian television, Peter Overton, AM.  “A Caring Life” is the title of CRBF Director, Keith Cox’s memoirs which was released two weeks ago.  The panellists reflected facets of Keith’s outstanding professional and personal life, where he has devoted himself to serving the community as a cancer nurse practitioner for almost 50 years.  The Hon Bronnie Taylor, MLC, Gail O’Brien OA, Fiona Jekki-Kordahi and Juliette O’Brien joined Keith and Peter in the discussion which added further context to the book itself.  Each of these people played a significant part in Keith’s professional and private life, and the fireside chat was lively, informative and at times very funny.

The raffle concluded proceedings, which saw the very popular and much loved osteosarcoma survivor 15 year old Molly Croft team with the Hon Bronnie Taylor, MLC to draw the winning ticket(s).   Esther Heathcote took out the major prize which was an original piece of art from renowned Aboriginal artist, Kylie Tarleton.  The painting depicted a cockatoo, which Esther shared with us are frequently seen on her country property, where the artwork will hang.

We are so deeply grateful to our donors and sponsors for the event, Secure Agility, Park Hyatt Sydney, Taylors Wines, Manning on the Mansfield and the Gibson family, Mr Phillip Fikkers – Macleay St Bistro, Kylie Tarleton, du Moulin Gallery and Fine Frames, Lord and Lion, Lindt Chocolates, Cristina Re, Cellini, L’Occitane, Koala Eco, Victor Churchill, The Woollahra Bookshop, Parterre, Luxury Getaways and Tilley Soaps Australia.  Without your profound generosity, this event would not be possible.

As always, this event is possible because of the team behind it.  Robin Todd, Kate Longden, Dr Mariana Sousa, Gloria Gapes, Esther Heathcote, Martin Rossleigh and Colin Brading all worked so hard during and prior to the event, to ensure its success.

Special thanks to the team at the Park Hyatt Sydney, and in particular Aoife Burns, Brandon  Colby, Christine Haddad, and Tara Lau for their ongoing assistance and professionalism over past months.

Finally, these events are reliant on the generosity and attendance of our wonderful, and very loyal supporters.  We will look forward to seeing you all again next year.


Just look over your shoulder. I’ll be there… Mother’s Day 2022

CRBF Mother’s Day Breakfast Park Hyatt Sydney 2022Just look over your shoulder – I’ll be there. Always….

“Children and mothers never truly part. They’re bound in the beating of each other’s heart.”

Sending our love on Mothers Day to all those who are mums, those who fill the gaps when mum is not there, and those who face the sadness of being separated from their children or their mums.

Remember you are never alone.

The saddest of goodbyes to a courageous young man

Jye Ferrier 23 June 2003 – 29 April 2022Today, 18 year old Jye Ferrier was farewelled by his loving family and friends at a truly beautiful service on the Gold Coast.

We awoke to the tragic news early last Friday, that this courageous young man loved by all, had lost his life to osteosarcoma, and the sun immediately disappeared behind a cloud.

The courage and determination Jye showed throughout what can only be described as an intensely cruel treatment process, defies words.  Those closest to Jye today remembered the kind, sweet, considerate, selfless young man whose smile, despite his plight in life, continued to light up a room.

Jye always put the needs of others first, despite the pain and sheer angst that came his way during treatment.

Jye made his mark on the world in such a significant way, and he will always be etched in the memory of those whose lives have been deeply touched by his special presence.

Jye’s family Lisa, Dean, Tristan and Byron left Jye in no doubt as to how much he was loved.  It is difficult to imagine a family more cohesive, attentive and supportive. Jye was always wrapped in the pure love of this remarkable family.

Sometimes there are simply no words other than to send our love, strength and our heartfelt condolences to  Lisa, Dean, Tristan, Byron, Jye’s extended family and his very special group of young friends who have spent the past week contemplating life without him.

Forever young…

Official opening of the YouCan Centre, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse

A truly memorable event this morning at the unveiling of the  Sony Foundation You Can Centre at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse

This state of the art centre will provide first class apartment style accommodation at no cost for families of the 15-25 year olds (Adolescent Young Adults AYA’s) living with a cancer diagnosis, who are forced to travel to facilitate treatment.

It is estimated upwards of 25% of this group will be sarcoma patients.

The omnipresent and commanding image of Chris O’Brien watched over proceedings which began with the poignant and magnificently chosen words of Gail O’Brien AM, followed by a flawless speech by Sony Foundation CEO, Sophie Ryan; the Premier of NSW Dominic Perrottet and the Hon Brad Hazzard both spoke without hint of an impending election, but instead from the heart; while host Peter Overton, forever the consummate professional, shared his deeply personal connection with this critical project.

The star of the event however was nineteen year old osteosarcoma survivor Elliot Prasad who delivered the heartfelt words that could only come from those who have walked this road. Elliot held the room in the palm of his hand – sharing his experience whilst undergoing treatment at Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and articulating the importance of the You Can Centre to those walking this road behind him.

Our heartiest congratulations to all involved.

An enormous step forward for those young people living with a cancer diagnosis.

A beautiful young life cut short by clear cell sarcoma

The 11th January, 2022 was one of the happiest days of Kienan Moore’s 21 years.  A day when, in a fairytale ceremony, he married the love of his life, his fiance Olivia, surrounded by his adoring family, and loving friends.  His beaming smile that was ever present, said it all.In a cruel twist of fate, Kienan and Olivia were to have only weeks to experience the unbridled joy of being newlyweds, before Kienan this week, tragically lost his life to clear cell sarcoma.

Throughout the 13 weeks that lapsed from recurrence of the cancer in November, to his passing, Kienan showed extraordinary selflessness.  At a time when he could be forgiven for shutting the world out, he brought the outside world in, by speaking publicly about his diagnosis, and his very uncertain future. This took extreme bravery at a time of unthinkable vulnerability.

Kienan’s positivity never waned, despite the hand of cards he had been dealt.  In fact, through the angst and the heartache, he was determined to be heard, and to tell his story in an effort to help others. He took every opportunity to start the conversation about sarcoma, and to highlight the importance of never ignoring pain and changes in the body, or unexplained lumps and bumps. He did so with courage, resilience and positivity, often during his darkest moments. When we recently asked what we could do to make his life better, he wrote ” I’m fine –  I don’t need anything. Awareness of this cancer.  That’s all I care about”.   Kienan continued to put others first with the unwavering love and support of his family.

We send our love and strength in abundance to Nicole, David, Cassel and Olivia, together with Kienan’s friends, as they contemplate their first days without him.

“Some people come into our lives and leave footprints on our hearts and we are never ever the same.” Flavia Weedn

We ask each one of you who reads this post to honour Kienan’s memory by not ignoring symptoms which could be potentially life saving.

To read more about common symptoms of sarcoma and to share some special memories of this very extraordinary young man please press on the link below

International Rare Disease Day 28 February, 2022

International Rare Diseases Day
Our brilliant scientists and health professionals together with investment in research can, and will make a difference to the 300 million people living with a rare disease.

As a collective our voices are strong.

We congratulate the stellar team at the Daniel Ferguson LGMD Foundation, launched today, the first organisation of its type in Australia to focus on Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy in its pursuit of improving outcomes for those diagnosed.

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