Consumer Advisory Committee
I am a mother, a sister, a daughter in law, a friend of many and an Elementary teacher. I have two wonderful children, 21 and 17. I love to ski, dance, sing, travel, read, and walk my dog. Six years ago my life changed for ever... My beloved husband was diagnosed with a very serious germ cell cancer. We tried everything, traditional and alternative, for 16 months. Through therapy, yoga, meditation and the love of friends and family, we moved towards Daryl's death with dignity, grace and a deep spiritual growth. There have been many challenges to overcome: learning to parent my children without their father, continuing to show my children that life still is wonderful, and keeping the memories alive without stirring up the swamp full of sadness. For the most part, I believe we are very successful but ... we will never be the same.
Len is the Facilitator (Chair) of the Vancouver Prostate Support and Awareness Group known as Vancouver PSA Group. He is also a director of the British Columbia Foundation for Prostate Disease, and Director of the Canadian Prostate Cancer Network. He has also served as a community representative on the Board of the Canadian Cancer Society, BC & Yukon Division.
Len is involved in a number of other activities including a member of Stewards and Church Council at his church, the Wheels to Meals program for seniors in Burnaby, Board Chair for the Marriage Project and member of the Ethics Committee at the BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver Treatment Centre.
Prior to his retirement in 1994, Len was an employee of Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation where he was responsible for the Loan Insurance Programs for the BC & Yukon Region.
Len was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer in May of 1992, chose surgery as his treatment option and has had no reoccurrence of the disease to date but does suffer from the side effects of the treatment.
Len is married with two adult children and enjoys woodworking for a hobby.
Brenda Hochachka B.Sc.emigrated from England in 1969 to work in the Cancer Research Center which was located at UBC before it moved to W 10th Ave.I am a widow with three grown children,my husband had a difficult 3 years with prostate cancer and lymphoma and died at home in 2002 after 19 weeks in the BCCA,Vancouver Hospital and G.F.Strong.
I have been treated for pre-menopausal breast cancer twice,in 1983 and 1993 and have had bi-lateral mastectomies,chemotherapy,oophorectomy and Tamoxifen. I was a volunteer with the CCS on the Information Service phone line for 16yrs, with their speakers bureau and at Camp Goodtimes for children with cancer.I served on a communications committee for the Screening Mammography Program as well as doing two different projects with the UBC Medical students training in communication skills.I have been a presenter at cancer conferences,one at the BCCA on issues around genetic testing and also one on issues surrounding breast reconstruction.I was an organizer of the[now discontinued] Dunbar breast cancer support group.Since 1996 I have been involved with Abreast In A Boat,a dragonboat team/society for women with breast cancer,as the inaugural captain and president.I now have a volunteer job with the START study on breast cancer and exercise which is a joint project between the BCCA and UBC Sports Medicine to study the effect of aerobic and resistance training on women while they are undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer.
I am interested professionally and personally in the goals of this research project . I have worked in health communications for over 20 years, both in the hospital setting and as a consultant. My work includes programs in child and adolescent health promotion, enhancing collaboration between care providers and parents of chronically ill children, and raising awareness about over-use of antibiotics in the development of antibiotic resistance. I have also volunteered on several cancer-related research projects as a patient representative.
When I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in 2001, I realized first-hand the importance of clear communication at a time of physicial and emotional turmoil. While I feel that information about my diagnosis, prognosis and treatment has been sensitively communicated and appropriate, I have met many other patients who did not have positive experiences. I see a particular need to improve communication between care providers and patients who have cultural or language barriers to understanding their illness and care. There is also a need to improve communication links among the various specialists and the family physician involved in a patient's care. My needs have changed during nearly five years of treatment through the BC Cancer Agency, so I am pleased that this project proposes to follow patients over a period of time. I believe that the project is important and timely, and that it will improve the experience of cancer care for many patients amd families.
George Main George (B.Sc. UBC '68, M.Ed. UBC '73)
is a retired Elementary School Principal from Langley School District where he worked as a teacher and principal for 34 years. He has survived both Prostate Cancer and Bladder Cancer, and works on the Executive of the Surrey Prostate Cancer Support Group developing workshops and discussion sessions for Prostate Cancer Patients. George is also a member of the Board of Directors of the B.C. Foundation for Prostate Disease and is part of the Foundation's Communication Committee.
In non-cancer activities George is a Director and Treasurer of the "Langley Family and Youth Services Society."