Swimming champion Cate Campbell spearheads national campaign to save lives from melanoma
5 February 2019
World record holder, Olympian and Australian swimming champion Cate Campbell has been announced as National Ambassador for Melanoma Institute Australia (MIA) and its national awareness and fundraising campaign, Melanoma March.
Cate today joined MIA Co-Medical Directors, Professor Georgina Long and Professor Richard Scolyer, and CEO Matthew Browne on a tour of Melanoma Institute Australia in Sydney. Cate also met young mum Jenny Day and her three little girls who lost their dad and husband David to melanoma. They are one of four families bravely sharing their stories of loss for the 2019 Melanoma March campaign.
Melanoma Institute Australia CEO Matthew Browne says the organisation is delighted to have Cate Campbell onboard as the 26-year-old athlete’s own recent brush with melanoma compellingly demonstrates the importance of being sun-safe and aware of changes to your skin.
Cate embodies the Australian way of life and her love of the outdoors, be it swimming, hiking or kayaking, makes her an ideal National Ambassador for MIA,” Matthew said. “Many people don’t realise melanoma kills one Australian every five hours and is the most common cancer affecting 15 to 39 year olds. By having Cate onboard we will better be able to reach young Australians with sun-safety and skin awareness messages.
Cate went for a skin check in November 2018 after bumping into a friend who had a near miss with melanoma. Cate had a mole on her arm removed during the check, which turned out to be Stage I melanoma and required further surgery. It was her melanoma diagnosis that inspired her to become an advocate for the importance of sun safety and skin checks.
As Australians, we spend so much time in the sun and with melanoma the most common cancer in young Australians I want to make sure people know the importance of having skin checks,” said Cate. “As someone with pale, freckly skin, keeping up with freckles and sun spots is difficult, but my melanoma developed in a mole I had my whole life and on the surface it looked like nothing had changed. I shudder to think what would have happened had I not had that mole checked. It literally saved my life.”
Melanoma Institute Australia is leading global research efforts to find a cure for melanoma. Despite recent breakthroughs tripling life expectancy for many advanced melanoma patients, more research is needed into why some people just don’t respond, and also to determine how to tackle earlier stage disease.
To reach zero deaths from melanoma, we need to crack the riddle of so-called ‘super progressors’, like David Day, whose disease progresses rapidly despite these new treatments and they die within months” said Professor Georgina Long. “We also need to better understand how we can use these new treatments during earlier stage melanoma, to stop it spreading to vital organs in the first place,” added Professor Scolyer. Melanoma March raises money to enable such national collaborative research projects to find a cure for melanoma. This year there will be 23 family friendly Melanoma March events across the country, as well as the 2000km Jay’s Longest Melanoma March from Adelaide to Sydney.
"I will be joining the Melanoma March event in my home town of Brisbane as I know I was incredibly lucky, but for so many people diagnosed with melanoma this isn’t the case,” Cate said.
We need to keep encouraging Australians to prioritise sun safety and skin awareness as part of their health regime, and we need answers. To find those answers we need research, and that means raising much-needed research dollars through campaigns like Melanoma March.
Please join me in helping those Australians bravely battling for their lives, and supporting families like David Day’s who are left behind.”
For more information on how to register for a march near you or donate to Melanoma March, go to www.melanomamarch.org.au
The 2021 Australasian Melanoma Conference (AMC2021) will held in Sydney, Australia.
A re-cap of the wonderful, and often very creative, community fundraising initiatives over the April to June quarter.
Our patients who donate their tissue samples and records to our research are helping to make a difference to the lives of future melanoma patients.
MIA researchers have recently been awarded two competitive funding grants, which will help facilitate their ground-breaking work in melanoma research.
Melanoma survivor Matt Kean is doing a 1000km bike ride around the Riverina this October, to increase awareness of melanoma and raise funds for Amie St Clair Melanoma - MIA. There are many ways you can be part of this life-changing ride!
Celebrate the 10th anniversary of Amie St Clair Melanoma at the Annual Ball in Wagga Wagga!
Riverina patients gain access to potentially life saving immunotherapy treatment close to home.
MIA's Prof Scolyer has been appointed as an Officer (AO) of the Order of Australia.
In a breakthrough which could extend to the treatment of other cancers, a new immune checkpoint inhibitor has proven effective in helping save the lives of advanced melanoma patients.
Whilst our research and clinical teams are trialling new treatments to save lives, it is our nurses who are on the front line providing care and support.
The easing of COVID restrictions has meant the return of community events, and we recognise the generous support of our community fundraisers.
Melanoma patients and their carers are being urged to participate in a ground-breaking survey which will shape the future of melanoma treatment, research, support and funding in Australia.
We have been buoyed by the wonderful support for our Melanoma March campaign, and our mission to cover Australia in footprints continues into April!
There was a wonderful feeling of community support amongst the melanoma patients, families and friends at the WA Melanoma Community Form.
The Price family has decided to share their story to inspire Australians to support research into new melanoma treatments.
New research has provided evidence in favour of a structured skin surveillance program for high-risk melanoma patients.
Melanoma research saved Bert's life at 101 and now he wants to give back.
A new MIA online risk calculator for clinicians can determine the likelihood of thin melanoma spreading.