For GPs

Jenna’s Blog – ‘Why I Support Targeting Cancer’

Jenna Dean is a radiation therapist based at Port Macquarie on the NSW Mid-North Coast. She is a passionate advocate for rural patients receiving access to radiation therapy and a member of the Targeting Cancer Working Advisory Group. She grew up in the NSW Hunter Valley and her interests include research, imaging, new technology, cross fit and photography.

Here she shares her thoughts on what spurs her career – and why she is a keen supporter of the Targeting Cancer campaign:

So I’ve been doing quite a lot of reading on self-development as part of a leadership course at the moment (but that’s a whole other story).  Interestingly though, I came across the concept of ‘Starting with Why’ (a book by Simon Sinek – a very interesting read if you get a chance).

When trying to get people on board with a cause, most people start with ‘What’… What they are trying to get people involved in, What it is that’s so important to change… but getting people to support you and your cause or trust you isn’t about What you do… it’s not even about Who is doing it… the most compelling part of supporting any brand or cause is the Why… Why you are doing what you do?

Jenna Dean’s wish to give something back spurs her career in radiation therapy.

This got me thinking about Why I’m driven to do the things I do. Why did I choose a profession like radiation therapy that has the potential to be stressful, challenging and sometimes sad and confronting? Because I want to help people and make a difference? Because you grow and learn when you are out of your comfort zone? Because people that I know and love have been touched by cancer?

Well, it’s a little of all of the above.

I have lost people I love to this disease that we target safely and effectively with radiation therapy and if I can do something to help people and their family to get through this difficult journey then I think it’s worth taking on the challenge.

This then got me thinking about Why I chose to become involved with a marvelous bunch of people that are working to raise the profile of our profession through the Targeting Cancer campaign. For me it’s about providing quality care to patients, because I believe that all patients deserve the option to have timely, effective, cost effective treatment for their cancer and even more importantly it needs to be accessible and where possible, close to home.  This is why I am involved with the Targeting Cancer Campaign.

1 in 2 cancer patients would benefit from radiation therapy at some stage during their cancer experience. However, less than 1 in 3 patients in Australia and New Zealand will actually receive radiation therapy.

The Targeting Cancer Campaign aims to increase awareness of radiation therapy as an effective, safe and sophisticated treatment for cancer. Click here for more information.

Click here to read a previous piece from Jenna.


Jenna Dean made this yummy Targeting Cancer cake to mark the recent National Radiographers and Radiation Therapists’ Week.