Can Assist Manning Valley were visited on Friday, January 30 by women who bore an extraordinary gift.
After being diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer in April 2019, Sara Croker, amidst multiple surgeries and treatment, made it her mission to raise funds to help out not-for-profit organisation that helps local cancer patients financially.
As well as creating hand-crafted items to sell, she gathered around her a tribe of "warrior women" - a group of women who are currently battling, have battled or are affected by cancer, to become calendar girls and tell their stories in the Manning Valley Cancer Awareness Calendar 2020. Raffles were held to fund the production of the calendar.
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With the sales of goods, raffles, donations and sales of the calendar, Sara and her warrior women raised $10,201.63 which they handed over to the grateful team on Friday.
Janice Latimer, president of Can Assist Manning Valley, said she got goosebumps, "and not from the air conditioning" as she read the amount that was donated.
Sara, with some of the calendar girls, also presented a scrapbook Sara had made showing how the calendar had come about and the journey it took to get it out in public.
What an amazing effort and example of locals helping locals! We are so grateful.Janice Latimer, president Can Assist Manning Valley
"This can proudly be sat at the front desk or at events to inspire other cancer patients and their families," Sara said.
She first approached Can Assist with the idea of a fundraising calender in 2019.
"We were thrilled when she suggested that she would like to donate the proceeds to Can Assist Manning Valley. Sara and the other 'calendar girls' have devoted many hours to this project. What an amazing effort and example of locals helping locals! We are so grateful," Janice said.
All funds donated to Can Assist go toward cancer patients in the Mid Coast region.
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Sara and "the warriors" have plans to have regular catch ups and outings, Including a celebratory lunch at the Manning Hotel, as well as finding ways to continue to help raise funds for Can Assist.
Sara continues to create handcrafted products which she sells on the Cancer Support Funds with Croker Creations Facebook page. Regular monthly raffle draws for cancer support packs will also continue.
Calendars (which are perpetual) are still available for $30 on that Facebook page or by calling Sara on 0422 132 155.