Take responsibility for your own well-being

It was a full house at Reading Country Club this past Wednesday evening, 27 July, as Stepping Stone Hospice hosted their 2nd annual ‘Come Whine With Me’ event. The sold-out function was a great success and the ladies who attended were treated to an evening of inspiration and insight, as guest speakers, Holistic Entrepreneur Marisa Wollheim and Prof. Carol-Ann Benn, considered to be one of the top breast-cancer experts in South Africa, shared their wisdom and knowledge.

Marisa welcomed all the ladies, saying that it was an honour for her to be there to “celebrate our humanity and the beautiful work that hospice is doing.” In introducing Stepping Stone’s CEO, Tersia Burger, Marisa commented that “being a visionary isn’t easy” and that Tersia has certainly experienced her own share of heartache, and has used it to fire a passion for Stepping Stone Hospice which, since opening its doors in January 2013, has cared for close on 900 patients and their families.

Tersia Burger said that she was humbled by the attendance and thanked everyone for their contribution towards the much-needed extension of Stepping Stone’s In-Patient Unit by 12 more rooms as part of their ongoing ‘brick by brick’ building fundraising campaign.

Undoubtedly, the highlight of the evening was the address by the brilliant yet very down-to-earth Prof. Carol-Ann Benn, who spoke candidly about the realities of breast cancer and encouraged the ladies to listen to their bodies and be proactive and responsible about their wellbeing, rather than sticking their heads in the sand. She likened having a mammogram to having seatbelts and airbags in a car, saying that “while they can’t prevent an accident, they’re important to have nonetheless.”

She also dismissed the radiation fears surrounding mammograms and sonars by commenting that “there’s more radiation in a shopping mall.” She stressed the importance of being supported by friends and family after being diagnosed with something like breast cancer, as it can be a very scary and emotional time, and ended off by saying that, for her, “life is all about survivorship,” adding that the work that hospice does is “critically important, as it’s about dignity and quality, and who are we to deny people that.”

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Prof. Carol-Ann Benn addressing the ladies at the hospice’s annual Come Whine With Me event.
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Drumming with Holistic Entrepreneur, Marisa Wollheim.

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