Speech: Childhood Cancer, Erin Griffin

Monday, 19 October 2015 Source House Page 124 Proof Yes. Speaker Rishworth, Amanda, MP

Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (10:55): Last month was Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and I know that many on both sides of the House wore yellow pins to recognise what I think is an incredibly important month. Many of us here have met families that are affected by childhood cancer. We have heard many stories—some of the resilience, some of the sadness and some of the hope. These are stories that are inspiring and that remind us what is most important. All of the stories encourage us as politicians to do more to support those affected by childhood cancer. I would like to take this opportunity to talk about one special girl who did battle childhood cancer, and that is Erin Griffin, an inspirational girl from Aldinga in my electorate. Erin sadly lost her battle with brain cancer last year at the young age of 14. Erin spent the last years of her life campaigning and raising awareness for other children and families affected by childhood cancer. Her actions were selfless. Erin wanted people to know that there is a child diagnosed with cancer every nine hours in Australia. She wants people to know that, although many children survive cancer, the sad fact is that one in five will die within five years of a diagnosis. Since Erin’s passing, her mum, Amanda Griffin, has bravely continued to do Erin’s work, raising awareness about this issue. Amanda continued to pursue Erin’s vision of bringing CureFest to Australia. Thanks to her hard work and the hard work of many others, this has been a reality. CureFest was held in Sydney last month and was a huge success. It brought together children, families, charities, researchers and health professionals in the hope of raising awareness and beating childhood cancer. That is not all Amanda has been working hard on in memory of Erin. With help and support, Amanda has put together a moving documentary to raise awareness and share the personal stories of the families and children affected by childhood cancer. Indeed what she has been able to do with this ensures that Erin’s voice continues to be heard. The campaign is called The Truth 365 Australia. I strongly recommend people to watch and share this documentary on social media. You can check it out on their website or on Facebook. The web address is thetruth365aus.org. I strongly urge the government to continue to make childhood cancer a priority and to ensure that childhood cancer research is funded properly.

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Amanda Rishworth MP

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