Our Heritage

The Children’s Cancer Foundation has been at the forefront of cancer research, clinical care and family support for decades, bringing together motivated and passionate individuals who are dedicated to improving the lives of children and their families affected by cancer.



Launch of the Children's Cancer Foundation Research Laboratory

The Children's Cancer Foundation Research Laboratory is launched at the Hudson Institute of Medical Research, housing the 'Living Organoids' research program funded by the Foundation.


Most significant program of funding in 25-year history

The Foundation commits $8,458,796 across 25 projects from 2017 through to 2023 – our most significant program of project funding in the Foundation’s 25-year history. View the full project list


The Million Dollar Lunch breaks fundraising records

​The Million Dollar Lunch 2017, held under the big top at the Palladium at Crown, raised more than $2.1 million – a record-breaking result in the event’s 13-year history.



15 years funding ground-breaking research at Murdoch Childrens

The Children’s Cancer Foundation and My Room celebrate 15 years funding childhood cancer research at Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, including research project funding and establishment of the biobanking unit.


Ambassador appointed

Kate Langbroek, Australian media personality and broadcaster, appointed Ambassador of the Children's Cancer Foundation.


Put Yourself in Their Socks

AFL and Sesame Workshop joined together for the Put Yourself in Their Socks campaign, led by Ambassadors Gorgi Coghlan (Media Personality) and Bob Murphy (Captain, Western Bulldogs).


Fundraising record for the Murray to Moyne Cycle Relay

33 riders and 13 support crew raise more than $46,000 for the Foundation in the annual Murray to Moyne Cycle Relay. "The chance to support such a brave group of children certainly puts life into perspective and the crew and riders are simply inspiring." - Frank, Cyclist


10 year anniversary of Family Resource Coordinator

Merridy Justice celebrates 10 years as Family Resource Coordinator at the Children's Cancer Centre, The Royal Children's Hospital (RCH). The Foundation has funded this role at RCH and Monash Children's Hospital since 2007.


Australian-first paediatric immunotherapy trial

The Foundation invests in an Australian-first immunotherapy clinical trial that successfully uses a child’s own genetically engineered immune cells to attack cancer cells.


A new look for a brighter future

Three's A Crowd develop a new brand for the Children’s Cancer Foundation.


$4.5 million investment in psych-oncology

The Foundation and My Room fund the psych-oncology program at The Royal Children’s Hospital and later at Monash Children’s Hospital (2007-16). The Foundation demonstrated the importance of psych-oncology, which is now funded by the hospital.


Patron appointed

Gillon McLachlan, AFL Chief Executive appointed Patron of the Children's Cancer Foundation.

Australian football is built on community. We are only as strong as the community in which we reside. The Foundation’s values reflect the AFL’s commitment to effecting positive social change.” - Gillon McLachlan, Patron


The Million Dollar Lunch celebrates 10 years

The Million Dollar Lunch celebrates its 10th anniversary, raising $11.3 million since 2005.


Shifting the focus

The Foundation shifts its focus to investing in clinical research, while continuing to support clinical care and family support programs.


$3.7 million permits Bone Marrow Transplant unit to achieve international accreditation

The Foundation’s investment (2006-12) permitted the state-wide unit at The Royal Children’s Hospital to achieve international accreditation for laboratory safety and patient outcomes, a prerequisite for international transplant exchanges and clinical trials.


Foundations merge to strengthen leadership position

KOALA Foundation (founded by parents from Monash Children’s Hospital) and the Children’s Cancer Centre Foundation (founded by parents from The Royal Children’s Hospital) merge to strengthen paediatric cancer advocacy, funding and support.

"The combination of two like-minded charities created scale, allowing the appointment of our inaugural Chief Executive, establishment of a grants committee to maximise project outcomes and professional administration," - Kevin Martin, Director of both charities pre-merger 


Medical staff resourcing at Monash Children’s Hospital

KOALA Foundation commits $2,485,000 (2010-16) to medical staff resourcing at Monash Children’s Hospital.


Medical staff resourcing at The Royal Children’s Hospital

Children’s Cancer Centre Foundation commits $3,137,950 (2010-15) to medical and psych-oncology staff resourcing at The Royal Children’s Hospital.


Clinical trial funding commences

The Foundation prioritises clinical trial resourcing, funding three staff at The Royal Children’s Hospital.


KOALA Kids volunteer program joins KOALA Foundation

KOALA Kids volunteer group launched to provide the ‘small things’ that help families during their cancer journey in hospital.



Investment in the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit

$3.63 million invested in the Bone Marrow Transplant unit at The Royal Children’s Hospital including construction and fit out of the unit, purchase of essential equipment for the Cord Blood Bank, which supplies stem cells needed for BMT procedures and salaries for 7 core clinical staff (2006-13).


Reconstructed cancer ward officially opened

The new Children’s Cancer Centre at The Royal Children’s Hospital is opened by Victorian Premier, Steve Bracks MP and Federal Minister for Health and Ageing, Tony Abbott MP. The vision and determination of all volunteers involved in the capital campaign, during 2002-2004, resulted in the hospital facilities being transformed into the benchmark for paediatric cancer care and clinical research in Australia.


The Million Dollar Lunch is launched

I have set out to achieve what some believe is impossible. I am on a mission to unite the movers and shakers of our entertainment industry with the captains of big business and the country’s leading entrepreneurs. The idea? The greatest fundraising lunch in the country.” - Tony McGinn OAM


KOALA Foundation established

Tony McGinn OAM, Chairman of KOALA Group, establishes KOALA Foundation.


$23 million raised to build cancer ward and research laboratory

The Foundation and My Room, led by Doug Rathbone AM and Peter Sidwell, raise $23 million to reconstruct the cancer ward at The Royal Children’s Hospital and build linked research facilities.


Children’s Cancer Centre Foundation established

Parents of children undergoing treatment at The Royal Children’s Hospital establish the Children’s Cancer Centre Foundation.


KOALA Support Group established

Parents of children undergoing treatment at Monash Children’s Hospital established a support group to help each other through treatment, the KOALA (Kids Oncology and Leukaemia Action) support group.