06 September 2023
Diagnosed with low grade prostate cancer aged just 55, Andrew Luciani recalled the relief he felt interacting with men of similar experience on his first visit to his local prostate cancer support group.
“I realised that there were other men that had gone through the same thing as I was experiencing. To learn and feel like you are not the only one to go through this and learn you can have support in different ways is wonderful. At the meetings it was nice to be able to talk about the treatment that I was going to have to proceed with,” he said.
Now the leader of Westside PCSG, Mr Luciani first joined in 2014, and said the open nature of attendees provided a safe, confidential space to discuss sensitive topics, including incontinence and erectile disfunction.
“Every meeting is different. Some meetings get into personal issues and it’s nice to sit back and see and hear group members genuinely try to help others in the group, especially newer attendees,” he said.
“Some just want to have a regular group of friends to talk about these problems and experiences over a cup of tea.
“A few months after someone joins, we are often thanked as a group for the help they have had from the group. Which makes it all worthwhile!”
After providing nearly 10 years of service to the group, Mr Luciani will be passing the reins onto another member of the Prostate Cancer Support network, to experience leading a group so important to the area.
“I’ve enjoyed every moment of my time as leader of Westside Prostate Cancer Support Group but I feel it’s time to let someone else take the lead, to bring their experience and guidance to the group,” he said.
“I want to give them a chance to learn as much as I have, and I think the group itself will really benefit from a renewed leadership.”
The Westside Prostate Cancer Support Group is held on the last Wednesday of the month at Henley Fulham Uniting Church from 7.30pm.
Anyone who wants to attend or explore leadership opportunities can reach out to Andrew Luciani on 0422 639 828.