Members of the Waipa Lodge N0 119 and Casting for Recovery North Island's board and volunteers all gathered at the lodge rooms in Te Awamutu on Tuesday, November 26 where Casting for Recovery North Island co-ordinator Wendy Caldwell received a cheque donation for $6700.

"This donation will enable us to fund our next retreat completely, the pampering, the gifts and high quality food especially. Some ladies have quite strict diets so we like to be able to provide nutritious and wholesome food," said Wendy.

Casting for Recovery is an international organisation that is run solely by volunteers and began in 1996 in the United States and came to New Zealand in 2010.

It offers a unique retreat programme that combines breast cancer education, peer support and the therapeutic sport of fly fishing as the main activity all in efforts to enhance the lives of women with breast cancer.


"A lot of the ladies who come on the retreat have never stood in the river before. They spend a couple of hours fly fishing and it can be so refreshing for them to focus on the river and where the fish might be instead of thinking about cancer," said Wendy.

It is also said that fly fishing can be beneficial to increasing mobility in the arm and upper body after having chemotherapy or radiation.

The next North Island retreat runs from February 14-16 at Castle Rock in Wharepapa and with the recent donation to the organisation they have been able to add one more spot and be able to invite an additional woman along.

"We hope this lady will be from the Freemasons society so that we can show them thanks for their donation and support," said Wendy.

Eleven women will go on the retreat where not only will they learn how to fly fish but they will also have a makeup session and time for massages, swimming, art therapy, meditation and relaxing in a spa pool.

For their day in the river the women will be assisted by 10 river helpers who are volunteering their time. Other volunteers include a nurse, chef, co-ordinator, facilitator, accountants and a secretary.