This year saw a new hybrid way of working with our people returning to the office, while maintaining the flexibility to work from home.
Cancer Council Victoria promotes an inclusive workplace which embraces diversity and promotes health and wellbeing. Our Diversity and Inclusion Plan for 2022-2023 celebrates individual differences and recognises tailored and inclusive support to achieve equitable outcomes for both our employees and for the diverse communities we work with. Furthermore, our Health and Wellbeing Strategy guides our work in supporting our people including:
- maintaining connection and communication
- being there when they need help
- developing awareness, knowledge and skills, and
- enhancing our monitoring and evaluation.
Throughout the year our people were able to celebrate diversity with various organisation-wide events held such as R U OK? Day, International Women’s Day, Men’s Health Week, Wear It Purple Day and World AIDS Day. Our people were also able to participate in a healthy cooking lesson, running club, midday meditation and other inclusive activities.
Why our people love working at Cancer Council Victoria
Our people tell us they value our friendly and supportive culture, flexible work and encouragement of work/life balance. More than anything, our staff and volunteers tell us that they want to make a real difference in the lives of people impacted by cancer.
Working for a great cause continues to be a key reason we attract and retain talented and passionate people. Now that staff are back in the office they enjoy connecting and collaborating with colleagues through face-to-face meetings and spontaneous reconnections.
Learning and innovation
We continue to use internal talent to develop high quality and engaging courses for our own staff and for our broader learning programs and services. We continue to win praise for our development of our people by designing and delivering products that build a broad range of key capabilities, skills and knowledge enabling our leadership and team’s abilities to work highly effectively.
Our commitment to reconciliation
I’m proud to work for an employer that takes reconciliation seriously and commits time and resources to helping achieve reconciliation.
In April, we launched our Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) with the commitment that we recognise the effects of colonisation on the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and embrace and support Australia’s First Nations people’s approach to wellness as an integral part of the work to achieve equity in health, improved life expectancy and a reduced impact of cancer in the community.
The launch included a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony, and our guest speaker, Jill Gallagher AO, CEO of Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO).
Staff support for our RAP remains strong. Our people are proud of the organisation’s commitment to reconciliation and ensuring our programs make real impact, with over 80% of employees taking part in Cultural Awareness Training over the last two years.
Young people’s cervical cancer screening campaign
Our Screening, Early Detection and Immunisation team and our Marketing and Communications team in our Prevention Division received the “Excellence in Women’s Health” award at the Victorian Public Health Awards in October. The award was presented to Cancer Screening Senior Manager, Dianne Eggins, in recognition of our Young People’s Cervical Cancer Screening Campaign.
Every year we celebrate our values by recognising employees who have demonstrated outstanding examples in excellence, integrity, and compassion. The nominations are assessed and voted by a panel of peers representing all divisions.
This year our award recipients for 2022 were:
- Nathalie Michel for excellence - improving whole of organisation processes.
- Hien Nguyen for integrity – increasing cancer awareness in the Vietnamese community by creating a community event which raised over $125,000 for Cancer Council Victoria.
- Jamara Maza for compassion - a member of the Aboriginal Quitline who uses her knowledge around smoking cessation to work with her local Aboriginal Health community.
World Cancer Congress in Geneva
Kate Broun, Manager of Screening, Early Detection and Immunisation in our Prevention Division was awarded the ‘Best advocacy with impact report’ at the World Cancer Congress in Geneva for her presentation on ‘Lessons learnt from five years of prioritising bowel screening in 2017-2021.’
Dorothy Reading Scholarship takes Nina’s research to new heights
Research Fellow Dr Nina Afshar was awarded the Dorothy Reading scholarship to assist her with her research into the risk of bladder cancer and links to alcohol, smoking, body mass index, diet and other possible associations.
The scholarship is in recognition of Dorothy Reading AM, who dedicated more than 25 years to cancer prevention.
Nina used part of the funds to participate in online training in statistical software required to analyse bladder cancer data stored at Harvard University, as well as attending the World Cancer Congress in Geneva.
This was a great opportunity to listen to what other researchers are doing, share our knowledge with others and bring information back to inform the work we do at cancer council victoria.