6th Annual Breakfast for Brain Cancer in Sydney: A morning of hope and progress


On Friday, May 24, the White Pearl Foundation hosted its 6th Annual Breakfast for Brain Cancer at the Royal Motor Yacht Club in Point Piper, Sydney, in support of The Brain Cancer Group (TBCG). The event brought together supporters, medical professionals, and special guests to raise funds and awareness for brain cancer research and treatment.

The morning began with morning tea and refreshments, followed by a series of impactful speeches.

brain cancer fundraiser

Suzane Peponis-Brisimis, Founder of the White Pearl Foundation, opened the event with a warm welcome. She acknowledged special guests, including Dr James Drummond, Neuroradiology Chief at The Brain Imaging Laboratory, TBCG; Dr. Jackie Yim, Radiation Therapist Supervisor (Neurooncology) at RNSH and Head of Operations and Research at TBCG; Tracey O’Donoghue, Company Secretary and Director of TBCG; Consul General of the United States in Sydney, Christine Elder; and major donors to TBCG, Barbara Cohen and her family, Pamela Roussis and Jenna Brennan, Evan and Margaret Shonk, Jane Recny and Nigel Stoke, Ed Apon and Elaine McCarron, and the Lewis Foundation.

brain cancer fundraiser
Suzane Peponis-Brisimis.

Ms Peponis-Brisimis paid tribute to the family of Tim Cohen, to the family of Peter Georges and TBCG Ambassador Matthew McCarron, who had secured a significant $450,000 donation to The Brain Cancer Group over three years.

Dr Yim expressed gratitude to the attendees and outlined his role at TBCG. He detailed the group’s focus on 3 pillars brain cancer Research, Education, and Support, and highlighted the establishment of an advanced Imaging Laboratory at the North Shore Medical Campus, funded by generous donations from the Family of Tim Cohen and the White Pearl Foundation.

brain cancer fundraiser
Dr Jackie Yim.

The keynote address was delivered by Dr Drummond who highlighted the advanced infrastructure at The Brain Imaging Laboratory’s North Shore campus, emphasising its blend of public and private hospital resources. He discussed the Brain Lab’s efforts in clinical trials and the challenges in treating aggressive brain cancers, particularly glioblastoma. Dr Drummond stressed the importance of optimising existing therapies and making incremental improvements rather than relying on breakthroughs like immunotherapy. He outlined the need for a personalised and precise approach to each patient.

Dr Drummond showcased the evolution of medical imaging from basic CT scans to advanced MRI and PET scans, noting that the North Shore campus is a pioneer in PET imaging. He elaborated on innovative imaging techniques that map brain functions and tumour characteristics, aiding in precision surgery and tailored radiotherapy. One notable project involved measuring oxygen levels in tumours to enhance radiotherapy, and he also mentioned a technique called “dose painting” to target resistant tumour areas more effectively. Dr Drummond highlighted the future of quantitative MRI and Artificial Intelligence in planning treatments, emphasising the need for research funding due to limited government support.

brain cancer fundraiser
Dr James Drummond.

The upcoming Chimera project aims to integrate advanced imaging methods into routine clinical care and share data globally to improve brain cancer care. Dr Drummond concluded by underscoring the value of incremental progress in enhancing patient outcomes and quality of life.

The programme also featured Joanne Hüging, a guest speaker and patient carer, who attended with her husband. Ms Hüging shared her experiences and insights, highlighting the importance of support for brain cancer patients and their families.

brain cancer fundraiser
Joanne Hüging.

Following the speeches, lunch was served and raffle prizes were drawn, marking yet another successful White Pearl Foundation event in support of brain cancer research and patient care.

brain cancer fundraiser
brain cancer fundraiser

$25,000 profit was generated with donations still being received. Funds will be donated to TBCG’s Imaging Laboratory. There is still an opportunity to support this initiative by donating at the following link: www.whitepearlfoundation.org/donate

The 2025 Breakfast for Brain Cancer will align with International Women’s Day and is planned for Sunday, March 9th, 2025.




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