Life can change in an instant, as Kristine and her husband Darrell know all too well.
“My husband Darrell is a former Navy officer with 13 years’ service. In 2018 he was diagnosed with high grade aggressive cancer, and we were told he needed radical, urgent surgery in Sydney.
“At that point, we were small business owners and we had to shut our business down.
“We’d never anticipated that something like that would have forced us to shut down our business overnight. At no time did we expect we’d find ourselves in a position where we couldn’t pay our mortgage, our bills or worry about how we would feed ourselves or pay car registration. Also being based in Adelaide and Darrell needing to be in Sydney, meant additional expenses. So, it was a shock in every way. I guess it speaks to how quickly life can change when you’re building something up.
“So that’s when a social worker put us in touch with Bravery Trust, and that allowed us to be able to survive, basically.
“Darrell is now doing okay. He’s had surgery and radiation and while we keep discovering more things that need attention, we’re very vigilant and we have a whole team of medical people who are looking after him.
“With a few years passing I wanted to formally find a way to give back and help people who would have been through and felt how I felt, so I’m now studying a degree in social work.