Bribie Pink Dragons, a breast cancer survivors club, is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year. For the past decade and a half, members have been paddling dragon boats on our beautiful Pumicestone Passage, enjoying the physical and emotional benefits of being part of a supportive and motivated community. Breast cancer survivors often feel isolated and in need of support from other women who have gone through similar experiences. The Bribie Pink Dragons provide just that – a dedicated and caring group of survivors, as well as their families and friends, who have experienced the ups and downs of cancer and are always there in unconditional and loving support.
The club has achieved many accomplishments over the years, including competing at international regattas. Five years ago, 19 members travelled to Florence, Italy, and won a race, our first ever. On April 9th, six members left Bribie to team up with Melbourne’s Dam Busters to compete at the International Breast Cancer Paddlers Commission IBCPC Participatory Festival at Lake Karapiro in New Zealand. This festival is an event for paddling teams that use dragon boat paddling as a means of rehabilitation for breast cancer survivors. The event brings together up to 4,000 women and men of all ages, fitness levels, and nationalities, all dressed in pink who all share a common experience. One of our club members is Joyce Thomas, diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 69, and has been paddling regularly for almost 12 years. Joyce turned 89 soon after arriving in New Zealand, making her not only the oldest member of our club but the oldest participating paddler. In her honour, and to our great pride, she has been chosen to carry the Australian flag at the Closing Ceremony as well as fill the role of drummer in the Sandy Smith Global Final event. This race comprises a member selected from each team to participate in 6 boats, then raft up for the “Flowers on the Water” ceremony in remembrance of all women who have lost their fight to breast cancer
Bribie Pink Dragons are always welcoming new members and supporters. We paddle three times a week during both summer and winter. If you are a breast cancer survivor or supporter and would like to join, please contact the club’s President, Maree, at 0405 550 960 for further information.
The Bribie Pink Dragons is a remarkable club that provides a supportive community for breast cancer survivors. We have achieved great success in international competitions and continue to inspire others to overcome cancer and live life to the fullest.