A New Chapter for Steven Walter Children’s Cancer Foundation
I am writing to share some important news about the future of Steven Walter Children’s Cancer Foundation. After much discussion by the SWCCF Board and significant personal deliberations, the decision has been made that the 2020 Snowy Ride will be the 20th and final Snowy Ride and SWCCF’s headquarters in Kirrawee will close in June 2021.
I know I speak for the Board and SWCCF volunteer family when I say that it has been an honour to be able to fulfil Steve’s final request of raising funds for childhood cancer research “so that no other child has to go through what he went through”. As I reflect on SWCCF’s journey over the past 19 years, I am thrilled to be able to share with you some more news about the sustainable future we are building to ensure our collective contribution to life-saving childhood cancer research continues.
In March this year, a partnership between the NSW and Federal Governments, the University of New South Wales, Sydney Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Children’s Cancer Institute was announced with funding of $608 million to create the largest childhood cancer research facility in Australia – the Comprehensive Children’s Cancer Centre in Randwick. We are proud to announce that it will be a permanent home to the Steven Walter Laboratory. This will ensure that Steve’s legacy, which you have all played an important role in helping establish over the past 19 years, will live on in future discoveries in the search for a cure.
While we work towards establishing the Steven Walter Laboratory at Randwick, we will also be winding up our current operations over the next two years. It is important that we mark our final milestones like the 2020 Snowy Ride and celebrate everything we have achieved together. That will include more than $9 million raised for childhood cancer research, supporting five research fellowships and more than twelve cutting-edge research programs which have generated more than $40 million in additional research grants seeded by our direct funding. These are achievements that we can all be proud of. However, it is the lasting positive impact on the lives and futures of children with cancer and their families, which is incalculable, that I feel we can be most proud of.
Thanks to your continued support of the Honda Snowy Ride, the Snowy Hydro Family program and our other fundraising activities like the Around Australia Rides, raffles and high teas, as well as the continued generosity of those who make direct donations, we have been able to make a significant difference to the lives of countless families with a child going through the toughest of challenges in treatment for cancer.
I look forward to seeing you all at our upcoming events this year. We are also working closely with our sponsors and event partners in planning for the 20th Honda Snowy Ride on 7 November 2020 to ensure that we end on a high note.
On behalf of the SWCCF Board, and perhaps more importantly as Steve’s mum, I express my deepest gratitude for the time and dedication that you have all provided to SWCCF’s mission of 100% survival for all children diagnosed with cancer. Steve would be so honoured and proud of what we have all achieved. Together we have become a formidable force in the fight against childhood cancer.
Susan Walter, AM
CEO and Co-Founder