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Dry July 2022 is proudly supporting :

Look Good Feel Better - Ensures any person facing cancer can access free, practical programmes to help them face cancer with confidence.

PINC & STEEL NZ - Supports people in their recovery from cancer treatment through their rehabilitation and exercise programmes.

Prostate Cancer Foundation NZ - Provides support services for men and their families affected by prostate cancer, including a freephone information line, a free counselling service, a nationwide network of support groups and Prost-FIT classes.

See below stories of how these organisations will utilise the funds raised to help those affected by cancer.

Latest Updates


Thanks to your incredible fundraising in 2021, LGFB can continue to help people face cancer with confidence through their diverse services

LGFG is a very helpful programme covering various different topics and allowing people to access from all around NZ... And done with so much compassion and warmth - thank you very much to all our 2021 participants! 

Look Good Feel Better’s mission is for any person, facing any cancer, anywhere in New Zealand, to be enabled to access our range of practical and informative programmes, helping them to face their cancer with more confidence. We have now evolved our programmes to ensure that any day, and every day someone diagnosed with cancer can gain access to information, tips, and techniques to help with the impact of their cancer.

In 2021, there were over 200 community and online classes put on. Early 2021 we had community classes planned in 41 centres and 4 online classes. With over 100 days locked down and the inability to safely deliver in person classes we converted our mix of delivery from 159 community and 48 online classes, to 129 community and 76 online. This meant that all but two classes that were planned were made up through the new online offerings. Our weekly average of bookings remains as high (and even higher most weeks) as pre-covid times.

There were over 2,600 engagements with the Look Good Feel Better programmes in 2021. The stop-start nature of the year meant the team were constantly evolving the classes to ensure that every person facing cancer could continue to access our free programmes.

Alongside our community classes, we now offer seven other programmes. Thanks to the support of Dry July, new programmes were able to be developed, trialled and made available to any person facing cancer.

In 2021 we continued our Q&A series, which has been overwhelmingly supported.

In addition, we introduced the confidence kits which were sent to women who were disappointed not to be able to attend a local class due to COVID settings and were too unwell or didn’t have the technology to join our online classes. Some simple tools that allowed them to still have that feel better moment.

New programme content, and the ability to be available anywhere, any time and any day to all people facing cancer was made possible with the support of Dry July funding. It allows us to try new ways to meet the needs of people already isolated due to their diagnosis. And this access means they can always get that uplifting, confidence boost, along with the tips and tools to help manage the impact of their cancer.

The programme developed in 2021 from our community in person classes in forty-one centres and four online classes since 2020 to over eight sessions available to anyone diagnosed with cancer.

Our programme at the end of 2021 now includes seven different guided live online sessions on: 

o Skincare and make up

o Brows – what you might need to remember

o Scarf tying and headwear

o Nails and hand care

o Managing hair loss and regrowth

o The men’s series - speaker series online

o Q&A session – open to people to meet the experts and answer your questions on topics

Dry July’s 2021 funding has enabled PINC & STEEL to continue reducing barriers and connecting more people with cancer across Aotearoa with a better every day

The 2021 Dry July funding has already benefited hundreds of New Zealanders who needed support in their recovery from cancer treatment. The impact of cancer treatment affects every aspect of a person’s life and the COVID pandemic has only made their experience more challenging.

Despite COVID, the restrictions and the risks, we have been proud to see our Certified Cancer Rehab Physios continue to show resilience and determination to offer safe and much needed oncology rehabilitative support to their communities. During this time our Dry July partnership has meant that we’ve been able to adapt and deliver our programs and continue to offer a better every day for anyone with cancer.

With Dry July funding we have:

• Increased the number of Paddle On Programs running in the community. Being outdoors and on the water has meant people with cancer have still been able to access the physical and mental benefits these sessions offer, whilst also aligning with the necessary COVID rules and guidelines. The Paddle On feedback has been excellent. Most participants referring to the uplifting nature of being able to truly connect with others in a safe environment, spending time in nature and being supported by cancer rehab trained Physiotherapists.

• As COVID restrictions varied in different regions we were able to continue to offer safe, PINC&STEEL therapist lead, face to face group Next Steps classes. We also supported our cancer rehab Physios to continue Next Steps Programs online when it has been necessary, or when participants have chosen it to be their preferred option due to increased risks. Again, the feedback has reflected the importance of being able to continue to attend group oncology sessions, to keep moving, and to be in touch with cancer rehab physiotherapists.

Alongside the pivots required for service provision during the pandemic, Dry July funding has played a major part in ensuring that people without insurance, people struggling to work during cancer treatment, those living in low socioeconomic households, and those impacted by healthcare inequity have still been able to access the cancer rehabilitation they need.

Dry July’s funding support has meant that PINC & STEEL has been able to continue to reduce barriers and connect more people with cancer across Aotearoa with a better every day.

I have never thought of myself as athletic, so I had to be persuaded to try Paddleboarding. In the beginning I was nervous but under kind and professional guidance I found an inner strength that I didn’t know possessed. I feel strong, I feel balanced, and the energy and joy I get from being on the water carries through into the rest of my life. I feel empowered by my newfound ability and that I have finally found a new way of being. I am eternally grateful that I was able to take part.” Sue, Paddle On participant 

Michelle's Story

Cancer patient’s husband reveals: Look Good Feel Better helped her bounce back to life

They say it takes a village to raise a child. And it takes a community to help a cancer patient.

It can often be just as hard for loved ones to see someone close go through treatment, and they can feel helpless.

So when Michelle Nand came back from a cancer support group a changed woman, her husband Ron breathed a sigh of relief.

“There were times she’d just be sitting there…bawling her eyes out. You'd be helpless, you couldn’t do anything. Coming home from work, she was not doing anything, not wanting to go out, obviously because she was tired,” he reveals.

That was until Michelle attended a free Look Good Feel Better class, an opportunity to be with other people going through cancer. As well as being equipped with hand-selected cosmetics, and the practical tools and tricks to deal with the visible effects of cancer, the group session helped restore her interest in life and boost her confidence to start socialising again.

“I’d spent five months just been hiding home, with no hair, no eyebrows. And I didn't feel confident enough into going out in public.” the project manager says.

“Your body is not the same from the chemo. You have low days, really bad days. You go into a really dark place and you start thinking about the negative things.

“I needed to do Look Good Feel Better. I went with my wig on, when we were doing the makeup I took it off. I didn't care who was looking at me, because we were all in the same boat. It's not about just hair and makeup – it's about connecting with other people who are struggling and going through the same journey as you are,” the 40 year old reveals.

The change in Michelle is palpable.

Ron says: “She bounced back to life, bit more lively, more smiles, bit more chatty, back to her usual self. She's wanting to go out. So it helped both of us.”

The Look Good Feel Better sessions are for anyone with any type of cancer at any stage of treatment. Michelle attended just after finishing chemo and radiation treatment.

“When I first found out about my breast cancer, it was very emotional. I just couldn't understand what was going on when I heard the word cancer. It was like my whole life, just turned upside down.

The first thing that came to me was, ‘was I gonna die’. But I was lucky. I was treated quite fast. But the gruelling side effects of treatment made Michelle withdraw, and she became isolated.

“The class taught me how something as simple as cutting up a tee-shirt to create a soft head scarf was helpful. When you wear your wig, sometimes it's too hot and itchy and tight – that was a big highlight for me learning how you can wear your tee-shirt in a fashionable way.

“It is a really good programme and I would encourage anybody to attend it if they are going through their cancer journey.

“Cancer doesn’t mean you have to just stay home and cry like I used to do. You can enjoy life. There are ways to look better and go and enjoy dinner with your family, going to the mall or the movies.”

Michelle believes it has helped her be as positive as her teenage son.

“He's 13 years old. He knows I'm sick, but he's very positive, He said ‘Mum 75 percent of people survive it and I know you will survive. We will get old together.’

“Meeting those other ladies and how positive they were that just lifted me up in a really good way. And you look at their spirit and it gives you confidence that ‘if she can do it, why can't I do it?’

It just takes you to a different level, like from feeling yucky & down, and then being confident and going out into the public It encouraged me to go out more. I think I'm at a much better place.”

Graham's Story

Graham is a dad, an accountant, with a new love and recognition of the benefits of yoga (after years of trying hard to enjoy it!).

Graham found a lump in his groin. It was initially investigated, and found to be nothing of concern. However, when the lump didn’t go away further, more invasive investigations confirmed the diagnosis of lymphoma. Graham had follicular lymphoma, a cancer that begins in infection-fighting cells of the immune system, called lymphocytes. Follicular lymphoma is a type of slow growing (low-grade) non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

“At the time of diagnosis, my doctor told me this was a readily treatable form of cancer. It took me a few months to realise that treatable doesn’t mean curable”. Then When Graham asked when the treatment including surgery was to start, he was shocked to be told “tomorrow”. At this point, Graham reflects; “you lose control, you don’t know what’s happening, your brain is going a million miles an hour and all this time it’s like you’ve jumped on a roller coaster and you’re completely out of control”. Suddenly Graham was undergoing chemotherapy, taking immunosuppressant drugs, drugs for nausea, antibiotics and antiviral medications. “There are so many things that are completely out of control, but things like choosing to participate in cancer rehabilitation, you can control. The exercise was something I had control over, it was something I could do for myself”.

Graham likes to share with others experiencing cancer the advice that was offered to him by a personal friend and oncologist; “You are your primary caregiver. You take responsibility for your health. The surgeons, they are experts, but they don’t know everything – you ask them, you challenge them, you find out”. This advice paid off more than once.

Graham was referred to a Pinc & Steel physiotherapist. He says, “she was wonderful. It was someone who wasn’t family, wasn’t a friend, I could just go and talk through my experience. Megan was someone I could ask questions of; she would research things or contribute to my recovery through her experience of other people with cancer”.

With a sporting background, motivation to stay active wasn’t an issue for Graham but fatigue and chemo brain were a reality and were the main challenges that cancer rehabilitation supported him to improve. He felt that cancer rehab kept him accountable for achieving his goals, aligning with the advise he had been given about taking responsibility for his health.

Since completing his cancer rehabilitation program, Graham now runs for an hour 3 times per week, he has completed the 30km Moonlight Marathon at Ben Lomond station near Queenstown and has written a book. He continues to be accountable for his wellbeing and is looking forward to the next chapter of his active life post cancer.

Murray's Story

Murray Eyles and the Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group

A Lot to Like with a Marlborough Man

Murray Eyles is a dedicated volunteer who has led the Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group since September 2020.

Murray is typical of men who get diagnosed with prostate cancer as a result of having regular testing. Cancer was a word he says he is accustomed to, having seen his mother battle cancer, which is why since the age of 40 Murray has routinely had prostate checks with his GP.

October 2014 will be a time Murray will never forget. It was when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Now at the age of 70 he stands by his decision to have regular checks, something he is very vocal about with other men and what drives Murray to volunteer to run the Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group.

Murray is as passionate about the Marlborough region as he is in creating awareness about prostate cancer and the need for testing and early diagnosis.

Early in February 2021 Murray found out about a new exercise programme called Prost-FIT, a programme designed specifically for men with Prostate Cancer from the Prostate Cancer Foundation.

 Murray started liaising with their local sports Stadium 2000 and the Cancer Society Blenheim. The health manager for the stadium Ricky White was more than happy to allocate a team member to “learn the ropes” of these specific Prost-FIT exercises. Our local Cancer Society got right behind this new exercise group for men and it resulted in the first session 11th August 2021 with 10 attending.

Since then, an average of 8-10 men attend each session, as being in Blenheim some of our group must travel out of the region for treatment.

Murray says, “my own personal perspective is that its great spending time getting some exercise with men that all have a same diagnosis. We now have an informal lunch after our weekly one-hour long session which has proven invaluable where we all share our own journey which has also helped others”.

He expands, “not only are the men benefiting from the exercise they get at Prost-FIT, they are also benefiting from the camaraderie of the group”.

November 2021, we held a breakfast for our local ProstFit men and encouraged their wives to come along and the general comment from the ladies was “I never thought that I would see my husband doing any form of exercise” so keep it going.

The Marlborough Prostate Cancer Support Group and the new Prost-FIT classes in Blenheim receive support from a grant via the Dry July (NZ) Trust. The Prostate Cancer Foundation has been a beneficiary of the Dry July campaign for the past two years and thanks the Dry July (NZ) Trust for their support. PCFNZ is looking forward to another successful Dry July fundraising campaign in 2022 to secure funding to continue to increase access to Prost-FIT for men with prostate cancer around Aotearoa New Zealand.

For more information about the Prostate Cancer Support Groups or how to attend Prost-FIT classes please visit www.prostate.org.nz or call the information line on 0800 477 678.

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