Parkes and Forbes Can Assist groups received generous donations from the Forbes CWA Evening Branch last week to help them deliver the valuable financial support to locals who are battling cancer.
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Forbes CWA Evening Branch President Karen Wright, who works with cancer patients in both Forbes and Parkes, saw the benefit of her patients wearing masks so started making some to distribute to them.
"Initially the idea was to give patients masks but then staff at Parkes and Forbes hospitals asked if they could purchase them and it snowballed from there," Mrs Wright said.
Forbes CWA members and other volunteers got together and formed a working bee over a weekend to meet the demand.
"It was a community effort as ladies donated material, while others cut out the patterns and those with sewing skills spent the few days sewing to make the masks," Mrs Wright said.
The number of masks made is not known as many were given away before people asked to purchase them.
When it came time for the money raised from the sale of the masks to be distributed, Forbes CWA Evening Branch decided that because many of the sales had been to Parkes and Forbes staff and residents, it was only fitting that the proceeds be divided equally between both Parkes and Forbes Can Assist groups.
Mr John Schrader, president of the Forbes Can Assist said they were very appreciative of the $650 donation as did Parkes Can Assist representative Pat Bailey.
"Funds that Can Assist raise are all used to support locals in their cancer battles," he said, "none of it goes to pay for administration or head office or anywhere else. It all stays in the local community to support locals."
All Can Assist money allows these dedicated workers to make a contribution towards transporting patients to appointments, their medications and chemist bills.
Sometimes they assist clients with vehicle registrations, mechanical repairs or even new tyres so people can travel to out-of-town appointments safely and on occasions, contribute to some accommodation and other practical things.
"We have been supporting about 26 families/clients at present but the number can increase to about 80 or more sometimes," said Mrs Maureen Field, Treasurer of Forbes Can Assist.
Covid-19 has impacted on the client numbers as some people are not accessing this support as much, but the charity is still there supporting anyone who needs it.
"We do what we can," Mrs Field said, "this donation is very welcome and we greatly appreciate the CWA Evening Branch's support.
"This is just another way that CWA works with and supports the local community."
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