About us

Marj Allen (Chair)

Profile to come.

 

Christine Cuff

Chris lives in Hokitika with her husband Martin, who have both been through cancer and recovery, along with two of their four children. Alongside her career, working at Air New Zealand as sole charge operator at Hokitika Airport for 25 years and operating a mechanical/petrol station business at Kaniere with Martin, Christine has been heavily involved as a cancer volunteer for about 20 yea rs. For seven years she also worked for the Cancer Society as sole cancer support co-ordinator in Hokitika, and ran support meetings in Hokitika and South Westland for many years. Chris is also a trustee of the Buller/West Coast Home Hospice Trust and a member of the South Island Alliance Palliative Care Workstream. 

Chris’ motivation is to see everyone diagnosed with cancer have better, faster, more informed treatment, and to ensure people have access to the support they need. 

Chris lives in Hokitika with her husband Martin, who have both been through cancer and recovery, along with two of their four children. Alongside her career, working at Air New Zealand as sole charge operator at Hokitika Airport for 25 years and operating a mechanical/petrol station business at Kaniere with Martin, Christine has been heavily involved as a cancer volunteer for about 20 yea rs. For seven years she also worked for the Cancer Society as sole cancer support co-ordinator in Hokitika, and ran support meetings in Hokitika and South Westland for many years. Chris is also a trustee of the Buller/West Coast Home Hospice Trust and a member of the South Island Alliance Palliative Care Workstream. 

Chris’ motivation is to see everyone diagnosed with cancer have better, faster, more informed treatment, and to ensure people have access to the support they need. 

 

 

 

John MacDonald

John spent most of his career as a self-described ‘serial entrepreneur’ involved in skiing, adventure tourism, marketing, publishing, and motor trade in Queenstown before a cancer diagnosis led to a change in direction.  Through a difficult 18 month period of diagnosis, John experienced depression and sought support through the Cancer Society and counselling.  Following the sale of his business interests during his treatment, John is now focused on using his skills to improve health and social outcomes in his community.  He is chair of the Southern DHB Mental Health and Addictions Network, and the Alliance South Central Lake Health Network, as well as a Councillor on the Queenstown Lakes District Council. 

John’s experience as a cancer survivor and his subsequent work have given him insight into the psychological, social and economic challenges a cancer diagnosis brings, and some of the inequities in health and social services experienced by those living in isolated or disadvantaged communities.

Linzi Ebbage-Thomas

Linzi and her family supported her mother through her terminal cancer, enabling her mother to die in her place of choice – at Linzi’s home in Wanaka.  Navigating various health and support services from a rural location was challenging, but Linzi’s family appreciated the range of support they received.

Following her mother’s passing, Linzi has combined her professional background in HR and her personal experience to contribute to the Cancer Society through leadership coaching, facilitating workshops and organisational development assistance.  She has also become a member of the Otago Southland Cancer Society Board and through the Cancer Society and the South Island Cancer Consumer Group is seeking to give a voice to people and whānau affected by cancer, in particular how people navigate their cancer journey.

Barbara Bishop

Barbara shared her story of breast cancer and involvement with the South Island Cancer Consumer Group here.

 

 

Kenneth Cook

Following two experiences with cancer, the first one being a malignant melanoma 25 years ago and the other prostate cancer 15 years ago, Ken wanted to help raise the awareness of prostate cancer and help and support other men who are going through the prostate cancer journey.

Ken was elected to the board of The Prostate Cancer Foundation seven years ago and is still on the board at this time. Ken is also the Dunedin support co-ordinator for the Foundation in the Otago area and arranges support meetings for members of the group every two months.  Ken attends many meetings with the object of informing the general public about prostate cancer.

 

Isobel Stout

When Isobel was diagnosed with breast cancer five years ago, she found that her mental health was the biggest challenge, describing herself as ‘struggling enormously’ and needing a more holistic approach to cancer care.  Since then, Isobel has been involved in a number of cancer support activities and organisations, including running the Christchurch Lymphoedema Support Group, fundraising for rehabilitation organisation Pinc and Steel, and supporting others through their journey with cancer.  Isobel brings to the consumer group a desire to see more integrated, holistic care for people with cancer.

 

Dianne Harker

 

Dianne brings her own experience of breast cancer and melanoma, as well as being a carer for several family members to the Cancer Consumer Group.  Alongside this, Dianne has been a nurse for over 40 years. She has worked as an educator and researcher focused on women’s gynaecological cancers.  Dianne brings a unique perspective with experience as a consumer and her knowledge as a health professional.  As Dianne transitions towards retirement, she joined the Consumer Group to be able to be a voice in how cancer care is planned.

 

Rory McGeown

Profile to come.

 

Lovey Gieger

Profile to come.

 

Thomas Ngaruhe

Profile to come.