Cancer diagnosis was at once a relief and devastating
Ms Danica Williams of Umina said she was diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkins lymphoma after two years of misdiagnosis.
The correct diagnosis was relieving and completely devastating all at once, she said.
"I now had an answer, but I wasn't supposed to survive," Ms Williams said.
But survive she did.
"After my treatment, I was still so sick.
"My immune system was shot.
"I had neuropathy. All my muscles had wasted away and I couldn't walk down my driveway because I'd lost so much muscle condition and could hardly breathe properly.
"As a patient, you and your family just put everything into getting through the cancer treatment and surviving, so we relied on friends, family and support organisations for so much else," she said.
"The Leukaemia Foundation provided me with access to an exercise physiologist who helped get me back on my feet, and relearn pretty much everything."
Ms Williams received support through the Leukaemia Foundation's Young Bloods program, which helps those aged under 25 diagnosed with blood cancer or affected by a blood cancer.
The program was financially supported by the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation.
Charitable Foundation acting chair Ms Jennifer Leslie said the Foundation had launched a campaign, Help Rewrite the Future, to raise awareness of the projects the Foundation had supported financially.
"Each case study in this campaign shows how profound the impact can be on the life of people and families who've benefitted from just one of the Charitable Foundation's projects."
Ms Williams agreed to be one case study.
"We're so grateful that Danica has given her time and been vulnerable in sharing her emotional and inspiring story of how her life has changed."
Ms Williams said her participation in the campaign enabled her to help others realise there are people and organisations within the community who are dedicated to helping others overcome adversity, and realise a better future for them and their loved ones.
Ms Leslie said: "The Charitable Foundation supports projects which have a genuine capacity to make the future better for people facing disadvantage, isolation or marginalisation."
Media release, 26 Mar 2019
Ashleigh Killingly, Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation