From Yarra’s Edge to NewQuay, Docklanders unite to fight cancer

Kaylah Joelle Baker

Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea was held on Thursday, May 25, and Docklanders were seen gathering across Victoria Harbour and doing their part to support those impacted by cancer.

Among those holding events for the annual Cancer Council fundraiser was the team at Berth Restaurant at NewQuay and residents and friends of Yarra Point on Yarra’s Edge.

In what was its 10th Biggest Morning Tea, the team at Berth was determined to make this year’s fundraiser – its first since pre-COVID – its largest yet.

After setting themselves an ambitious goal of reaching $25,000, Berth’s Lisa Pham, who was in-charge of hosting the event, told Docklands News that Berth was proud to announce that it had exceeded its goal.


“Our 10th annual Biggest Morning Tea was the best by far, and we are overwhelmed with all the wonderful support from our team to help execute the event, suppliers for their wonderful donations of food and drinks, and our other donors and local businesses for prizes for a fun-filled day,” Ms Pham said.


“Without them, the event would not have been possible. A special mention to Baden and Mark from Lucas Real Estate, who helped MC and auction on the day, and our guest speakers, Lea, Mary, Nick, and Vanessa who shared their experiences with the dreaded C.”

Around 100 people attended the event, participating in raffles, a ring toss game, an auction, and taking a moment to reflect on close friends and families impacted by cancer through the memory wall.

While a celebratory time to raise money, chat, and enjoy each other’s company over morning tea, the significance of the cause was not lost on everyone who attended, with the team at Berth also looking at how it had been directly impacted.

During the pandemic, two of Berth’s staff members were diagnosed with cancer: Vanessa George in 2019, and Maria Fernanda in 2020. Their journeys and determination has continued to encourage Berth to raise funds.

Across the harbour at Yarra’s Edge, more than 50 people came together for Yarra Point’s Biggest Morning Tea, organised by Docklands resident Petra Harmer-Shrowder.

Before the morning tea even began, the group had successfully achieved its goal to raise $1000, and this sum grew to $2772 thanks to further in-person and online donations, as well as a contribution from De’Longhi.

In addition to monetary donations, many businesses also did their part through donating prizes for the raffle, from a glamour or corporate photoshoot to luxury hampers, gift vouchers for restaurants, personal training, massages, and adventurous experiences.

“There was lots of fun, food and even Tea Trivia games to keep the fun going. Haircare Fashion was present showing the wigs they produce for cancer patients and Laura Hahn of Willpower One was present to show how she assists cancer patient wellness,” Ms Harmer-Shrowder told Docklands News.

“We also had one local artist, Karen Sutherland, who painted a beautiful artwork with all the colours of cancer to donate, and so many business owners and families pitched up and not only gave wonderful prizes for the raffle, but also donated cash.”

The importance of the day is something not lost on Ms Harmer-Shrowder having supported her husband during his nine-year journey with cancer, and she encouraged others to get onboard.

“The importance of the Cancer Council is very close to my heart and I do hope that others will help raise funds now and in the future to assist this common goal,” she said. •

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