OUTLOOK: You can wear a tuxedo like Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute's honourary director George Kannourakis. Or not. The call is to not show up for this UnGala event but help how best you can. Picture: Karen Brothers

Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institue: UnGala charity event


YOU can dress in your pyjamas with some jewellery bling or pull on some trackies while rocking your favourite high heels.

There is no dress code and no trying to make small talk in this UnGala event.

Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute is inviting people to not attend its annual fundraiser ball but instead to take part and contribute how they can from the comfort of their homes on September 25.

Work at Australia's sole regional cancer research centre has continued amid the pandemic but, as the Institute does not receive government funding, the team has looked to pivot its vital fundraising avenues.

A special night at home seemed like the next best thing to a gala ball.

Everyone is invited to dress up, or not, order takeaway to support Ballarat small business, and kick back to watch a short video from the FECRI team to be sent out for the occasion.

In a tough year, FECRI is asking people to donate however much they can - great or small - because every cent goes to cancer research in Ballarat.


The UnGala event follows a highly successful wine auction in July, raising $10,000, with all wines from across the region sold for almost the combine retail listing.

Ballarat raised $300,000 needed to fully launch a new breast cancer research program via the annual Ballarat Cycle Classic, which was held weeks before the pandemic set in.

This breast cancer program has already produced international published findings that aim to change treatment for women who develop aggressive triple-negative breast cancer pregnancy.
FOCUS: FECRI's breast cancer team: senior researcher Aparna Jayachandran, Professor George Kannourakis, medical oncologist and senior research fellow Prashanth Prithviraj, cancer patient Rachael Murnane and PhD candidate Revati Sharma.Picture: Adam Trafford

UnGala participants are encouraged to take photos and share their nights in on social media to help show how they are making a difference with good food, wine and even some dancing.

For the first time, the FECRI is preparing to thank people for not turning up to help but instead hoping for a good virtual turn out in support.

For more details to not attend FECRI's UnGala event: