‘Blown away’ by help
Family overwhelmed by support as community rallies behind mother battling cancer
AFTER feeling sick earlier in the year, the last thing Jennifer Cavanagh of Dharruk expected was to be diagnosed with cancer.
The mother of two was diagnosed with stage four metastatic cancer and, after already having had treatment for breast cancer more than nine years ago, Mrs Cavanagh said the diagnosis came as a shock.
“I wasn't expecting it. The kids were just devastated,” she said.
But the community, and especially her children’s sports clubs, have thrown their support behind the popular mum, to help the family through a tough time. Mrs Cavanagh, 46, is currently having her fifth chemotherapy treatment.
Daughter Charlie is heavily involved in the Tregear Netball Club as both a player and an umpire. This Saturday, the club will host a pink day at Popondetta Park to raise funds for the Cavanaghs.
Club president Margaret Weir said Popondetta Park would be turned pink for Jen.
“I was so taken aback when I found out about Jen – another mum came to me and suggested we do something, and we came up with the fundraiser,” Mrs Weir said.
“It is her third year with the club and she is such a lovely lady, she is very supportive.
“She will always help if anything is needed.
“We will have a bucket for donations and will be doing an auction as well – we have a signed Socceroos jersey, a Wanderers jersey and the Swifts netball team also sent a signed bib.”
Mrs Cavanagh said she and her family had been overwhelmed by the support of the community since her diagnosis.
“I have been blown away by the support; it really does give us so much strength,” she said.
“It is hard to put into words what it means to us.
“This community really is beautiful and they restore any doubt you have in human kindness – people we don’t even know have been helping out.
“We have such a huge support network ... my son plays for the St Clair Crows and they did something for us last week too.
“Many of the boys wore pink beanies and some of the men from the club shaved their heads afterwards. It was unbelievable.”
Jennifer Cavanagh with her family Mark, 12, Charlie, 13, and husband Troy at their Dharruk home. Picture: Justin Sanson