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Not for profit feature

The charity: Sweet Louise

Venus member: Sue Brewster

Sweet Louise was inspired by the life of Louise Perkins who at the age of 27 was diagnosed with breast cancer and by 29 was told the cancer had advanced to an incurable, secondary stage and she was given just two years to live. Louise lived another 10 full and positive years and when she passed away in December 2004, her husband, Scott Perkins established The Louise Perkins Foundation. The Louise Perkins Foundation launched Sweet Louise in 2006 with the single minded vision of improving the quality of life for the hundreds of

As part of our commitment to give back to the community, we offer a complimentary membership in each of our groups for a not for profit organisation. I’d like to introduce Sue Brewster and Sweet Louise. Hi, I’m Sue Brewster, Chief Executive of Sweet Louise and I have had the privilege of being in this role for nearly three years. In a former life, I was General Manager of Marketing at TVNZ and seven years ago I jumped out of the corporate world frying pan into the charitable sector fire. There were two main reasons for my move. One was to attempt to get a better work/life balance and be there more for my family and two was to use some of my business skills in a day job that contributed back to society. I would say that I am getting there with the former (hence the out of the frying pan into the fire reference) as life in the not-for-profit sector can sometimes be more taxing and demanding as you try to achieve more with less. Sweet Louise can be so humbling when you get to experience first-hand the spirit, courage and make-themost of every moment attitude of our Sweet Louise women and men (yes, we have helped five men). When I am asked how I do what I do, knowing that all of our Members are living with an incurable diagnosis, I reply because I see some of these women live more in six months than I see some people live their whole lives and as part of Sweet Louise, I feel honoured to be a part of that living. As one of our Members said ... “Living with advanced cancer will be a different life, not a journey towards death.”

New Zealanders living with secondary breast cancer. Sweet Louise now operates throughout New Zealand and to-date, they have helped over 1,000 women (and five men) and their families. Seven years on from launch, 95% of women with metastatic breast cancer are being supported by Sweet Louise.1 Sweet Louise Members are introduced to a comprehensive range of services, complementary therapies and support that help to improve their quality of life. Our Support Coordinators create invaluable connections and assist Members with access to Sweet Louise services, advise about other services available to them and provide ‘someone to talk to’ about issues relating to their quality of life. Monthly Member Meetings offer opportunities for sharing experiences and establishing connections with other Members. Sue.Brewster@sweetlouise.co.nz www.sweetlouise.co.nz 0800 11 22 77

Venus magazine issue four  

A magazine for New Zealand women in business

Venus magazine issue four  

A magazine for New Zealand women in business

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