The relationship between Cancer Wellness Support (CWS) and Quest for Life began back in 2006 when our organisation was only one year old. Through one of our massage therapists, Leonie Dale, I met Eleanor Oyston and eventually the path led to Quest and meeting Petrea.
The first client we sponsored to attend the Quest for Life program for people living with cancer was also that same year.
Our working together has continued to this day with CWS sponsoring around 50 clients to attend the programs over the last 13 years.
During that time Petrea has spoken at our conferences, presented programs such as ‘Happiness is an Inside Job’ and more recently, in 2017, Petrea and Wendie presented an all-day workshop called ‘Peace in Practice’. This was a valuable experience for all our therapists, counsellors and nurses who gained much and appreciated the opportunity to come together and explore the challenges of working with people who are living with serious illness.
There are always some ‘pearls of wisdom’ to take from these sessions and the authentic sharing of Petrea’s and Wendie’s personal experiences are part of the human connection that we in this business notice is missing from our huge, detached and impersonal health system. The scientists look after the science and inevitably leave the care and compassion to someone else.
This, of course, is what Quest represents and people come back from the programs with a new sense of balance, knowing that even though their physical health is in fact the same, they have gained the tools to manage their situation in a much more positive and gracious way. They also come back with an attitude that they are a living person and not a dying one, which is a huge shift that helps them find more peace and acceptance.
Having to deal with a life-limiting diagnosis myself, I am now coming to terms with my own mortality and what I have learnt through the collaboration with Quest for Life has been invaluable. I can’t say I have it “all sorted” but feel a certain sense of acceptance of the value of the life I have and the gratitude for those around me who offer love, support and strength.
Happy 30th Birthday Quest for Life and Congratulations to Petrea, Wendie and all the staff.
May you grow and prosper.
Robyn Yates OAM
Founder and former CEO
Cancer Wellness Support – Blue Mountains and Penrith Valley