Supporting people living with cancer – our history

The Prostate Cancer Institute (PCI) was formed in 2002 to address the needs of men with Prostate Cancer and is located within the Division of Cancer Services at St George Hospital, Sydney.

At the PCI, men with prostate cancer receive individual assessment and treatment according to the nature and type of prostate cancer. Apart from medical intervention, men are supported by prostate nurses, genetic counsellors, dieticians and psychologists. Medical members of the PCI include surgeons, radiation oncologists and medical oncologists.

To support the work and to secure the future of the PCI a fund raising arm was considered. There was an existing community group with proven ability. This community group had raised funds to create a community lodge that provides affordable accommodation for cancer patients and their families. Bezzina House which is collocated next to St George Hospital is a 15 room lodge with parking which has provided over 70,000 room nights since it opened its doors in 1998. The committee raised funds to construct the lodge.

Following the success of the committee it was reformed and became part of the PCI 2002. Fundraising activities commenced and from 2002 to 2019 over 16 million dollars was raised by this formidable community group.

The main focus of the fundraising committee involved improving the facilities of the PCI within St George Cancer Care Centre. From 2002 to 2019 various celebration balls, golf days, major sponsorships, significant local council donations, in kind donations from various trades, bequests from past patients and many local community group donations enable the committee to gather funds at a staggering rate. These funds have all been channelled into construction works for the Cancer Care Centre to improve its physical facilities. The overall objective was to create additional space on the ground floor of the Cancer Care Centre to allow improved patient care and amenities.

Since 2002 fundraising has provided us with the completion of 5 major building projects. The fundraising committee has enable the construction of 9 additional offices, a complete Brachytherapy Operating Suite with recovery space, Brachy CT and control rooms, enhancement of the Clinical Research Unit over 2 levels of the Pitney Building, the construction of an entire additional floor on the existing Pitney Building which now houses 33 of our staff and finally the major refurbishment of the Ground Floor of the Cancer Care Centre and the Atrium connection to the Pitney Building. The final project completed in May 2019. The PCI fundraising committee is now looking to the future again. The focus of the fundraising committee over time has moved from Prostate Cancer to addressing the needs of all patients with Cancer.  With this in mind St George Cancer Care Incorporated was established in 2016. Both entities continue to raise funds for the benefit of all St George Cancer Care Centre patients and their families.

We owe much thanks to the past Community Board Members – Chair Mr Warren O’Rouke, Vice Chair Mr Rob Robson, Mr Phill Bates OAM Treasurer and Mr Brian Langton.