Fleurieu RFDS June dinner

“Changing Faces”       Women of the Fleurieu June Dinner

Despite the chilly weather a gathering of close to 80 ladies attended the June RFDS Women’s Dinner at Goolwa.  The guest speaker this month was Bronwyn Chant, the Corporate and Communications Relations Manager for Craniofacial Australia.

The Australian Craniofacial Unit is currently located in the Women and Children’s Hospital and the RAH and staff are keenly anticipating their move to the New RAH.  Bronwyn who has worked with the service for 13 years is passionate about Craniofacial Australia and the work carried out by Professor David David and his team. She has a very personal interest in the wonderful service having had close family members as craniofacial patients following a traumatic road accident.

Professor David has worked as a craniofacial surgeon for over 40 years and is today the world’s leading craniofacial expert. He is assisted by a dedicated multi-disciplinary team of doctors, 40 surgeons and other specialists from many fields, including ophthalmology, neurology, dental and radiology.

Over 19,000 patients aged from birth to 18 years of age have been treated in Adelaide, Australia’s central craniofacial base. After suffering life-threatening injuries and/or disfigured faces resulting from accidents, burns, and horrific birth defects these young people have been given a new image.

90% of the patients are Australian, with a smaller percentage brought to Australia from neighbouring countries through various philanthropic groups.  Part of the Foundation’s vision is to develop training programs for doctors in overseas countries where many of the cases possibly can be linked to poverty, poor human and environmental health.

Bronwyn presented several short but very moving videos using remarkable time lapse photography of child patients. These showed the stages of craniofacial reconstruction progressing from the initial disfigurements and deformities as first presented to Dr David and his team to the end result. The transformation of patients to normal and very attractive young people, over a period of sometime 10 or more years, was nothing short of miraculous.

Bronwyn’s bright and enthusiastic presentation gave the audience a heartfelt understanding of the daunting journey that craniofacial patients and their families must go through.

An art Exhibition is to be held for Craniofacial Australia in the SALA events during the month of August. Trevor Hancox (Bronny’s father) is opening his private gallery in Mt Barker in aid of Craniofacial Australia. Entry is a gold coin donation.

Bronwyn is available to come and speak to any interested groups. Their office no.is 8267 4128

Report by Elizabeth Caldicott

Fleurieu RFDS Support Group

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