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Master Cook Challenge: A Culinary Adventure with Cathie

26 Sep 2023

Making a difference can take on many forms; sometimes, it's as delightful as a dish prepared with love. 

Meet Cathie, a familiar face in the healthcare community who takes her passion for cooking to new heights. As a 2022 Master Cook finalist, Cathie shares with us her journey and what inspires her to be a part of CAN GIVE DAY.

You were a Master Cook finalist last year! What inspired you to participate in the Master Cook challenge?

Helen (Canberra Hospital Foundations' CEO) actually asked me to jump off the building as part of the Big Wig Challenge, and I knew that wasn't for me. But not wanting to let the side down, I undertook to organise an equally fun and generous activity, and hence, Master Cook was born. Personally, I love cooking, and I love a bit of competition, so it was an easy decision for me to compete.

2. Can you share some highlights or memorable moments from Can Give Day 2022?

Can Give Day has become such a special day in the CHS calendar. It invokes goodwill and such a good feeling amongst all our teams. Last year, watching those very brave Big Wigs abseil down the side of Building 8 of the Hospital to a road packed with supportive onlookers was a real treat. My other real highlight was competing against a qualified chef (Tashi from Lamsheds) and being judged by one of Canberra's best, Francesco Balestrieri, Executive Chef at the award-winning restaurant Agostini's.

3. Speaking of the Master Cook Challenge, can you give us a sneak peek into what we can expect this year? Are there any new twists or surprises in store?

This year, we are delighted to be able to host the Challenge at the wonderful Canberra College Cares facility, which has state-of-the-art training kitchens. We will have full audience participation with tickets available for those who want to come and enjoy some grazing platters, food trivia and fun activities. All whilst witnessing the competing chefs do their thing and barracking for their favourite. I'll be there hoping to go one better than my 2nd place finish last year!

4. For those reading this interview who want to get involved and support the Canberra Hospital Foundation, what advice or message would you like to share with them about how they can make a difference?

The Canberra Hospital Foundation makes such a difference. All proceeds from my events will be directed towards the Cancer Wellbeing Centre currently being constructed in the Canberra Region Cancer Centre. This space will become the central hub for support for those being treated for cancer and just as importantly, to support those caring for their loved ones. It will be the jewel in the Cancer Centre's crown and I am so proud to be able to help it become a world-leading centre through my fundraising efforts.

In the world of CAN GIVE DAY, every effort, every dish, and every smile makes a difference. Cathie's culinary fundraising is a testament to the wonderful ways our community comes together to create positive change. Join us on CAN GIVE DAY 2023, and together, I CAN, you CAN, we CAN!

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