Local initiative ‘Made with Love’ Turban Angels will have an abundance of new fabrics to make their Made with Love chemotherapy turbans after the Murray Valley Rural Services donated $500 to the program.
Murray Valley Rural Services owner Graeme McInness discovered the Turban Angels initiative through research and knew it was the perfect program to donate money to.
“It’s a fantastic cause and so good to see someone with such a passion for something so worthwhile,” Graeme said.
“We were looking for a worthwhile cause to donate to and then we came across the Turban Angels and it was a no-brainer from our end.”
Made with Love Turban Angels founder Deb Van Corler said it was amazing to receive donations like this off local businesses and she will always be forever grateful.
“It’s huge for us to receive donations like this off wonderful, giving businesses because we run off donations,” Deb said.
“Everything we do is made of love so donations help us to keep that going.”
The Turban Angel program began in 2015 when Deb’s mother was suffering from Bowel Cancer and lost her hair due to the treatment she was undertaking.
Cancer turbans at that time were unable to be sourced locally and were pricey online so Deb decided she could make one herself for less money and her mother loved it.
From there word of mouth got around town and requests began to come in for Deb to make turbans for cancer sufferers in the area.
“Our whole reason for the program is to help out women who have been diagnosed with cancer as it is such a big thing for a woman to lose her hair during treatment,” Deb said.
“We make them to look good as it makes the woman feel good.
“We also make men’s caps now so the males who have lost their hair during treatment are able to cover up as well especially in the winter months.”
Demand got so high Deb enlisted the help of her fellow Lions, who are now her group of angels and together they took over the meeting room of the Yarrawonga Lions Club to start their Made with Love Turban Angels initiative.
Now the program is a flagship of the Yarrawonga Lions Club and every Tuesday around nineteen to twenty women make their way to the Made with Love ‘headquarters’ to craft close to 200 turbans a week.
“We’re there to help other people,” Deb said.
“My angels; the volunteers, these women are the most amazing, supportive people and I am so glad to now call them friends and that they decided to volunteer with this initiative.
“It’s not about me, these women work so hard as well and the bond we now share is just amazing.
“We are still always looking for more volunteers, we can always find something for people to do here.”
The initiative has been such a success that seven countries in the world as well as every Australian state and territory are now being distributed with the turbans through the help of Fastway Couriers in Albury.
Even remote Aboriginal Australian towns have been able to access them.
“We wanted people to be able to get their paws on them for free wherever they are,” Deb said.
“Luke Arcass from Fastway Couriers in Albury has been the most amazing person to us by organising to collect our boxes free of charge from Yarrawonga and distribute them to wherever we need within the country.”
The Murray Valley Rural Supplies business who donated the money to the Turban Angels, is a part of the CRT group.
By being a part of the CRT group they are eligible for a $500 donation each year through the iGiveLocal program formulated by Bayer Crop Science Australia and CRT.
The donation is formulated to support local communities across the CRT network as both companies believe in the importance of working hand in hand with local communities to continue improving the quality of life for fellow citizens and to protect our environment.
Territory Sales Manager at Bayer Crop Science Australia Wes Amor, brought a large cheque to hand over to Graeme to present as Graeme said the Turban Angels was a program that resonated with him personally and it was also great to help fellow locals.
“We get a community incentive grant each year from the Bayer Crop Science Group and look for other groups in the community to donate the money to and this one just resonated so much as everybody has been touched by cancer in some way, shape or form,” Graeme said.
“From the store’s view-point we will try to help out the Turban Angels where we can in the future.
“You have to look after your locals.
“We hope the donation will go some way to help out.”
Deb replied straight away as she said, “that’s a lot of metres of fabric in that.”
Wes said that he was pleased this was the type of program the company’s donation was going and he would love to see it happen more often.
“This is one of the most worthwhile causes to put money towards,” Wes said.
“What makes it even more fantastic is that it’s a rural initiative.
“I would love to go back to the company and look into offering donations to this cause more regularly as it is so deserving.”
Deb said for as long as she can she will make turbans for people suffering from the wretched disease to take one less worry off their shoulders and help where she can.
“You don’t realise the difference you have made until you actually hand a turban to somebody and see their face light up right in front of yours or see somebody walking around wearing one of your turbans,” Debbie said.
“Nothing can prepare you to hear those words that you have cancer so to do something that can help in some way is just the most rewarding and beautiful thing.”