“We make a living from what we get
but we make a life from what we give.”
The quote above was the introduction from Anne M. Franzi-Ford J.P. Manager Volunteer Services Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre who spoke to Members at the last meeting.
Anne has had an extensive career in paramedical services, volunteering and community work, in her time she has:
- Been a Foster Parent to 25 children when in South Australia (not all at once!).
- Acted as a Justice of the Peace
- Been an Independent Person – Justice Department
- Has been a SEDA – Puppy carer
- She is also a Life Governor of Freemasons Homes Victoria

She says “I love working in the Volunteer Sector, meeting people from so many diverse backgrounds, and I have a firm belief in the value of volunteering. "It is of benefit to the volunteer, the community, and the organisation.”

Her working life has been just as varied:
- She worked and lived in a tribal Aboriginal Community – Mantamaru (Ngaanyatjarra people) – in the Gibson Desert for 2 years.
- Spent time working with the Kosovas at Puckapunyal with Red Cross Tracing & Refugee Service
- Was a private nursing for a quadriplegic patient.
- Set up 2 Community transport programs in rural Victoria
- Worked as a First Aid sessional instructor for Red Cross
- Worked at St. Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne for 5 & a half years
- And of course, is now the Manager of Volunteer Services at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
Along the way Anne has managed to raise 5 children and is a grandma to 9 gorgeous little grandchildren.
Peter Mac is an organisation that has provided cancer care, research and education for 69 years, it was set up by Sir Peter MacCallum whose moto was ‘Nothing but the best is good enough in the treatment of cancer’
- It is Australia’s only public hospital solely dedicated to cancer.
- It has grown from a one room clinic to over 2000 staff at five locations across Victoria
- And it is committed to treatment informed by research and research informed by treatment with clinical and research teams that maintain strong links.

Along with patient treatment, research is a crucial part of the work at Peter Mac. Approximately 25,000 square metres of dedicated Cancer research space. There are over 580 researchers from Peter Mac working in clusters on levels 11 & 12. There are also researchers from University of Melbourne and Melbourne Health occupying level 10 On level 13 there is a dedicated immunotherapy lab, headed up by Peter Mac’s executive Director of Cancer Research Professor Joe Trapani.
The hospital cares for more than 30,000 cancer patients & their families each year. The majority of patients are from metropolitan Melbourne, 25% are from regional Victoria, 5% are from interstate and 1% are from overseas.

Care is provided in eleven tumour streams each with a multidisciplinary team of clinicians, nurses and allied health professionals.
Anne quoted the following statistics which brought home to all just how valuable a resource Peter Mac is and how lucky we are as a community to have it in Victoria:
- Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide
- 14 million people are diagnosed with cancer per annum
- This is expected to increase by 60% to 22 million by 2030
- In 2017 an estimated 134,174 new cases of cancer were diagnosed in Australia
- At the end of 2014, 410,530 people were alive who had been diagnosed with cancer in the previous 5 years
- Lung cancer is estimated to be the leading cause of cancer death.
- Breast cancer in females is estimated to be the most common cancer in Australia.

Peter Mac works together with local and international partners to minimise the impact of cancer in our communities.
Anne manages a team of volunteers that provide an extraordinary range of services to Peter Mac cancer patients, a number that is difficult to cover in the space of this Bulletin but in point form they include:

1. Volunteer Recruitment and Retention Programs
- Induction and ongoing development programs
- Skills/talent/ availability database
- Community Engagement
- Corporate Engagement
2. Fundraising Programs
- Auxiliary Shop & Raffles
- Peter Mac Merchandise sales
- Ground floor stalls
- Regular Book sales
3. Patient and Carer Support Programs & Services
- Pain & Palliative Care
- Specialist Clinics
- Wellbeing Centre
- Daily convenience trolley
- Exercise Program escort
- Admissions - 0630hr start
- Sleep wear & hygiene products
- Apartment & personalised shopping services
- Personalised celebrations, birthdays,
- Gifts for patients
- Child minding – family meetings & appointments
- Ward visiting
- Special & High needs patients
4. Therapeutic Support Programs
- Massage and reflexology
- Hairdresser
- Headwear Service
- Wig Library
- “Look Good Feel Better” – 26 years @ Peter Mac
- Manicures
- ‘MacChat’ Tuesday & Wednesday Evening Program
- Pet Therapy – in conjunction Lort Smith
5. Other Programs
- Annual Cancer awareness stalls
- Patient Library
- Surveys
- Other Departments support
- Tours of new hospital
6. Special Events Programs
- St Margaret’s School Christmas Choir
- Paediatric Christmas Gifts
- Annual Thank you luncheon for our Valued Volunteers
And if that isn’t enough volunteers also provide patient support products of:

- Image bags
- Toiletry bags
- Drainage tube bags
- Info/Dressing bags
- Catheter bags
- Headwear
- Tena hats
- Toy bags
- Underwear
- Nighties
- Jocks & Socks
- Birthday Gifts
- Jewellery
- Makeup
- Cylinder bags
- Graseby bags
- Breast cushions
- Quilts & Rugs
- Non slip sox
- Slippers/Bed Sox
- Reading glasses
- Hygiene products
- Ear plugs & Eye masks
- Activity bags for children
- Mother’s/Father’s/ Christmas Day gift to all inpatient & apartment patients
- Christmas gift to all child patients and siblings.
A recent development at Peter Mac has been Pet Therapy in partnership with Lort Smith.
“When you love doing what you do, when you go out of your way to improve someone’s day, just by smiling, having a laugh and a joke, listening to someone, you truly are making a difference.”

In thanking Anne for her presentation, Chairman Rob Stewart recounted his own experience as a patient in the hospital and he praised both the work of the medical staff and the volunteers who were invaluable in supporting the recovery of patients during and post treatment.

President David also thanked Anne for her presentation and to Judy Saddington, a member of our Rotary Family and friend of Anne's, for bringing our guest to the club. David acknowledged the work of the volunteers and was pleased to be able to present Anne with a cheque from the Club for $1,500.00 to support the their ongoing work.