Recycling fundraiser helps cancer patients pay the bills

Melanoma cancer nurse coordinator Nicki Taylor is recycling cans from around the office to raise money for cancer patients.

Cancer patients experiencing financial hardship are getting a boost thanks to a recycling drive in Westmead Hospital’s Crown Princess Mary Cancer Centre.

The Geraldine Fund was established nearly 20 years ago to provide emergency funding to people in financial distress due to their cancer treatment.

The fund was set up in memory of inspirational young mother Geraldine, who touched the hearts of many staff who banded together to give Geraldine and her family their first beach holiday before she died.

Melanoma cancer nurse coordinator Nicki Taylor said she was inspired to donate to the fund after seeing the difference it made in the lives of patients.

“If you need to take time off work for cancer treatment then it’s quite easy for the bills to stack up, but that should be the last thing you’re worrying about when you need to focus on getting well and spending quality time with your loved ones,” Nicki said.

“This is just our way of helping to ease the burden during a difficult and often stressful time in people’s lives.”

Nicki was inspired by a similar project on the aged care ward at Auburn Hospital to start collecting recyclable bottles and cans, which can be refunded for 10 cents per item under the NSW Environment Protection Authority’s Return and Earn initiative.

She has raised $100 so far with support from her office, the day suite infusion centre and nurses in radiation oncology, and she has her sights set on an initial goal of $500.

“I’ve just started at a manageable level with two collection points, but I would like to get it going more with some assistance,” Nicki said.

“Hopefully what we do can also inspire the next ward or service to get involved and do their bit for the environment while also raising money for a worthy cause.” To support the Geraldine Fund or other fundraising projects within Westmead Hospital, contact the Westmead Hospital Foundation at or call 1800 639 037.