Fight Cancer Foundation was formed in 1989 as the Bone Marrow Donor Institute (BMDI) by a small group of families devastated by leukaemia with the aim of establishing a donor registry to give hope and save lives.
The group was led by the visionary John Opie AM, whose daughter Karen was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia at age 21 and needed a bone marrow transplant. At that time there was no bone marrow donor registry in Australia, however Karen was fortunate to find a compatible bone marrow donor match in her twin sister Michelle. John met many families who weren’t so lucky and whose only option was to access costly treatment overseas. So John banded together with other desperate families who made it their mission to lobby for a public Australian register to provide all Australians with access to life-saving stem cell transplants.
The legacy of the Opie, Lamers, Lodder, Curle and Boland families continues in Fight Cancer Foundation’s mission to give hope and save lives.
Bone Marrow Donor Institute is established
Bone Marrow Donor Registry is established
The inaugural Red Ball Melbourne is held
The Rotary Bone Marrow Research Building is opened
The first Footy Colours Day campaign takes place
BMDI Cord Blood Bank is established
Our first patient accommodation centre opens in North Melbourne
Our education support program is launched at The Royal Children's Hospital, Melbourne
The 'Back on Track' education support program is launched at The Children's Hospital, Westmead
BMDI rebrands as Fight Cancer Foundation
Our second patient accommodation centre opens in Hobart
Our third patient accommodation centre open in Albury Wodonga
The 'Back on Track' education support program at launched at The Children's Hospital, Randwick
The 'Back on Track' education support program at launched at The Women's and Children's hospital, Adelaide
The inaugural Fay Duncan Award for Women in Medical Research is awarded to Fight Cancer Foundation funding recipient, Dr Mary Anderson
Fight Cancer Foundation celebrates 30 years of Giving Hope and Saving Lives
The stage II expansion of our Albury Wodonga patient accommodation centre is completed