Trefoil Guild Fundraiser

Trefoil Guild is an adult section of Guiding that links, Girl Guide members, former members and those new to guiding. Trefoil Guild looks to connect women who are actively involved in guiding or have a history of Guiding.

Fraser Coast Trefoil Guild was formed in Hervey Bay, Queensland eleven years ago. Our motto is Fun, Food, and Friendship and we enjoy being in each other’s company at our meeting every month, wherever that may take us.

We have a regularly active group of ladies who are keen to support local guides, and each year we have a Cuppa in the afternoon for Cancer to donate to the Cancer Council. This year our chosen foundation was Melanoma Patients Australia. As the theme is black, we dressed in black, our table decorations were accentuated with black, and we enjoyed a wonderful array of delicious food, one of our members even managed to make black icing for her cupcakes.

We followed Covid restrictions regarding close contact and all wore masks, but it did not stop us having some fun and raise funds for a worthy cause.

It gives us a sense of pride to be able to help in fundraising research into cancer.

Sue Downey, Guild Member and Melanoma survivor

What is my story?

In 2017, I had a melanoma removed which was cleared, and no more treatment needed. However, in December 2021, on my 70th birthday a massage therapist found a lump in my left armpit. After a CAT scan, MRI, PET Scan and several biopsies it had become known as a malignant recurring melanoma. I had a level 3 axillary clearance in January 2022, at which time the surgeon removed 24 lymph glands – the melanoma had attached itself to my bones and two of my glands had wrapped itself around it. It was all removed, and I am into the 4th of 13 immunotherapy treatments.

If I hadn’t received the massage provided by my daughter as a birthday gift, my prognosis might not have been as good as it may well be. The melanoma was just waiting for something to happen to bring it out and thank goodness it happened. My daughter literally saved my life. It’s been a roller coaster ride of emotion, anger, disbelief and denial but I am getting through it with support from my friends, but most importantly my family.

My advice to anyone who may feel like something is not quite right with them is to do something sooner rather than later. I knew six months prior that my body was rejecting something foreign but let it go. I am lucky that I have a brilliant surgeon and an equally brilliant Oncologist and GP/cancer surgeon attending to my after care.

I must wear a lymphoedema support sleeve for the rest of my life, but it is a small price to pay when I consider the alternative. Plus, I have nine grandchildren to guide through their lives as only a Nana can.

Sue Downey
BA Jrn