A PAIR of Bellarine women will make their way to the Melbourne Cricket Ground this weekend carrying a giant papier mache dragon.
Leopold’s Dianne Twigg and Barwon Heads’ Elise Ness are members of Dragons Abreast Geelong – Juggernauts, a dragon boat racing organisation made up of breast cancer survivors.
The duo will this Sunday join their team, and seven others from across the state when they walk from Federation Square to “Stand With Me at the ‘G” with their team banners.
The event is part of Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) and Melbourne Football Club’s fifth Field of Women, where thousands of people will stand together on the MCG in the shape of the iconic Pink Lady before the Melbourne vs Sydney Swans match to represent the 18,235 Australians who will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2018.
Dianne said she underwent treatment for breast cancer 12 years ago, and had been a member of the Juggernauts for 11 years now.
“Dragons Abreast changed my life because I got fit, and then we started competing all over Australia in different Dragon Abreast events,” Dianne said.
“There are a whole lot of amazing women who support one another.
“It’s part of my life now, and something I do every Saturday afternoon.”
Elise, who also had breast cancer and is now undergoing treatment for tumors in her spine, joined the Juggernauts just last year.
“I was at the gym and saw a flyer and I had always wanted to do something on the riverseeing I live so close,” Elise said.
“I usually resist joining things like that because I don’t want to be defined by cancer or labeled as a survivor, but I found that it is really lovely to be with people who have been through similar experiences and who understand.
“It is a really fun group and there is lots of laughing.”
Dianne will take part in her third trip to “Stand With Me at the ‘G” this Sunday, while it will be Elise’s first.
“It’s an incredible event, very moving, and there is a positive atmosphere about surviving, and making the pink lady in the middle of the G,” Dianne said.
“I never thought I’d be standing down there in the middle of the ground!”
The Field of Women raises awareness and much-needed funds for BCNA to continue its work supporting Australians affected by breast cancer.
BCNA acknowledges the financial support of the state government and Red Energy, which ensures that 100 per cent of the $59 Field of Women ticket price goes directly to BCNA.
For more information, visit bcna.org.au/ fieldofwomen or dragonsabreast.com.au.