The Tewantin Noosa Lions Club and Noosa Heads Rotary Club, with the support of council, have initiated four awards for Local Legends in the Noosa region to be presented today.
The aim of these Australia Day awards is to recognise an individual/group for making the Noosa region a more enjoyable place to live. Oncologist and haematologist Dr Sybil Kellner, the founder of Club Chemo, will be officially recognised as a Local Legend in the category of promoter of civic pride, hospitality, friendship and caring.
Rotary club member Peter Mason paid tribute to Dr Kellner’s work with the following story:
Dr Kellner – “just call me Sybil” – is part of the special breed of caring, sharing physicians. She is a medical phenomenon in her own right, whose work goes largely unnoticed by all but those with whom she comes into direct contact.
She has helped alleviate the suffering of hundreds of cancer patients through her and her team’s own brand of treatment in the oncology ward she helped found 10 years ago at Noosa Hospital.
What sets Sybil apart from the rest in the rapidly changing world of cancer research and diagnosis is in the successes achieved by her positive approach to the treatment of these cancers. She has, through a unique combination of verve, enthusiasm, dedication and an almost limitless supply of good humour, instilled a sense of positivity into her patients by taking the fear out of chemotherapy.
“Patients, like fellow travellers on a long journey, form deep friendships,” Sybil recently told listeners on ABC Coast FM’s Morning Show. “They’re members of a very special club. It was only natural that we should call that fellowship Club Chemo. So we did – and the name stuck.”
September 2009 marked Club Chemo’s 10th birthday, which made the most recent Club Chemo Christmas Party one of the not-to-be-missed events on Noosa’s social calendar.
Those privileged to be part of the Club Chemo set all agree that, while many belong to other clubs, few reward their members with the sense of pride, achievement and personal fulfilment that Club Chemo engenders.