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03
Sep
2017

Aussie dads unite in brain cancer fight for daughters

 

In 2011 Barrie lost his ten-year-old daughter, Eloise, to brain cancer, while Dustin’s eight-year-old daughter, Chloe, has been battling the disease since 2013.

Eloise and Barrie

Sadly, survival rates for brain cancer have barely improved in more than 30 years, but Barrie and Dustin hope they've helped to change that following their participation in a high-level round-table meeting, chaired by Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt last month.

The meeting saw the two dads join leading researchers, major philanthropists, and brain cancer organisations, like Cure Brain Cancer Foundation, with the expressed aim of urgently improving brain cancer’s unacceptable survival rate.

Since losing his daughter, Barrie has dedicated his life to finding a cure, working as Head of Engagement for Cure Brain Cancer Foundation to advocate for greater government focus and funding for the disease.

He believes the meeting was a sign that Cure Brain Cancer Foundation's message is finally being heeded and was an important first step towards a unified plan to significantly increase survival. “It’s too late for Eloise,” says Barrie, “but we need to provide access to more treatment options very quickly so we can help save other children and families from going through the same thing.”

Dustin’s own tragic story gained national attention in April when his open letter to the Prime Minister appeared in The Australian newspaper.

Since then, Dustin has worked alongside Cure Brain Cancer Foundation in calling for the disease to become a Government priority. “People with brain cancer and their families need hope, they need to see action,” says Dustin. “It’s not just about money, it’s about a coordinated approach with a clear survival objective.”

Dustin and family

Falling just before Father’s Day, the August meeting carried extra weight for the two passionate dads, who hope the roundtable discussion will result in real action and mark the start of a meaningful shift towards improved brain cancer survival.

Brain cancer round-table