SHANNAE Carnell has witnessed the devastation and grief caused by cancer up close and personal.
However, her determination to support cancer-related causes has seen her recognised as Australia’s Global Hero for Hope.
The Canning Vale medicine student’s family sadly have a long history with cancer, stemming from her father’s bowel cancer diagnosis when she was 10 years old.
While he managed to overcome the cancer, the family suffered another blow when Miss Carnell’s mother was also diagnosed with cancer and tragically passed away in 2016.
Mss Carnell said her parents’ experiences inspired her to support The Cancer Council wherever possible and made her determined to follow her dream of becoming a doctor.
“When mum was sick we accessed support services from Cancer Council,” she said.
“What stood out to us was the fact that they invest funding into ground-breaking research for a variety of cancers – not just one specific type.
“It was my dad’s experience with cancer that helped me to make the decision to study medicine. It was my mum’s cancer experience and endless compassion for others that keeps me motivated to finish my studies so that I can dedicate the rest of my life to helping others.”
Upon her enrolment at the University of Western Australia, Miss Carnell became involved with the university’s Relay for Life Committee and has since dedicated an enormous amount of time towards the organisation.
She said was grateful for her time on the committee and was proud of the work she had achieved since joining them.
“It has been truly special to be part of an amazing group of young people who are willing to volunteer for over 30 hours on a weekend to help others in their community.”