Lighthouse Classic to shine bright

January 15, 2022 BY

Meaningful: Janet Jones near the Aireys Inlet lighthouse during the first Lighthouse Classic. Photo: SUPPLIED

THIS month’s Lighthouse Classic will have a dual meaning with event set to raise funds for cancer research and honour founder, Janet Jones, who recently lost her own battle with cancer.

Now in its second year, the Lighthouse Classic was established by Ms Jones to shed new light on what causes cancer and how it can be treated more effectively.

Participants can walk or run anywhere they like to complete the challenge any time during January, with 12 kilometres the suggested distance.

Last year, more than 780 walkers and runners participated in the challenge, with most choosing the return route from Urquhart Bluff to the Aireys Inlet lighthouse.

As a result of Ms Jones’ vision for the Lighthouse Classic, more than $70,000 was raised for the Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute in just over a month, enough to fund a cancer research scientist at until the end of 2021.

A former Ballarat resident, Ms Jones personally faced three separate battles with cancer over 33 years and was always passionate about research that might help others facing similar challenges.

She first began supporting the FECRI in the early 1990s when it was known as the Cancer in Kids Auxiliary.

Leading the research at FECRI is Professor George Kannourakis, who was Ms Jones’ oncologist for more than 30 years.

He was inspired to establish the research institute in the early 1990s as a promise to terminally ill teenager, Fiona Elsey.

Ms Jones was part of this development from the very start, assisting to drive fundraising for the establishment of the centre.

“Janet was courageous, determined and inspirational in her efforts to help achieve better results for all cancer patients,” he said.

“The Lighthouse Classic raises much-needed funds for our research to better treat aggressive cancers in the future.”

All funds will go to FECRI, which is Australia’s only regionally-based cancer research centre.

To sign up to take part in the Lighthouse Classic, head to lighthouseclassic.com.au.

Participants can also share their achievement on Instagram by using the hashtag #lighthouseclassic21.