Life is to be lived
TOGETHER, WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Getting diagnosed with a life-threatening illness can be compared with free-falling without a safety net. In a split second your life is spinning out of control and it is unstoppable. Sadly we all know of someone who has found himself or herself in such life-altering situation. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in Australia and the second most common cancer to cause death in women, after lung cancer1. In 2017, it is estimated that 17,586 women and 144 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer, an average of 48 people every day2.
One woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer was Jane McGrath. Unusually she was barely 31 years old at the time. After marrying celebrated Australian cricket fast bowler Glenn in 1999 and based on her experience with the aftermath of the disease, they established the McGrath Foundation to raise money for Sydney’s St George Cancer clinic. Now, Jane had seen a thing or two about resilience in sport, and when in 2003 the cancer returned she perceived herself less as a victim the second time around.
She realised that many people face trauma in their lives and she promised to ‘rise to the challenge’ 3. And that she did. This time around Jane experienced first-hand the warm embrace of support of a breast care nurse, and saw the benefit of her own ‘pink angel’ not only for herself but for Glenn and their children. Her pipe dream was that every family in Australia experiencing breast cancer should have the support of an ‘angel’ and the McGrath Foundation began to focus on offering care and support to those who need it, and to celebrate ‘life’ because life is there to be lived4. Jane was terrified that girls were growing up thinking breast cancer wouldn’t touch them, because she knew from experience that it does.
Uncompromising, she surrounded herself with positive energy and never lost hope, she became a warrior and worked harder that even Glenn could imagine. So it was with great shock and sadness that Australia learned that Jane McGrath had died on 22 June 2008 aged just 42.
Since then the McGrath Foundation has evolved into a breast cancer education and support charity aimed at making sure every person suffering from breast cancer has access to a specialised breast care nurse, regardless of where they live or their financial situation. The McGrath Foundation carries on not only Jane’s vision, but her sense of fun, generosity of spirit and love for life5 and after ten years it was time that the renewed focus and spirit of the Foundation was reflected in its identity.
McGrath and the Hulsbosch team both agreed that the Foundation needed a more recognisable logo to raise awareness in order to take the Foundation’s message into the future. It was necessary to develop a blueprint that would show the way to communicate with people and with the organisations that support McGrath Foundation’s vision such as; corporate partners, government, community fundraisers, donors, media, and of course the care nurses themselves. This strategic blueprint then would provide the parameters to develop an identity.
Together with the Foundation the Hulsbosch team set out to define the brand values, as they are crucial to the success of achieving Jane’s vision. The core beliefs of friendship, wellbeing, innovation and integrity infused every aspect of the Foundation and were to underpin the brand’s image of fun, passion and empowerment6. Like Jane, the brand image needed to demonstrate that, with love and respect, you get things done.
‘I am especially proud of re-branding the organisation and increasing the brand awareness and ranking of the Foundation in “AMR’s Charity Reputation Index”, from ninth to seventh place nationally, and the consistent ranking in the top five of the “GiveEasy Innovation Index”’
Petra BuchananCEO, McGrath Foundation