Cancer in Kids @ RCH (CIKA)

Raising funds for research into solid tumours.

Area: We are based in Melbourne but have strong representation in rural Victoria especially Hamilton and Bendigo.

The story so far

CIKA was founded in 1980 by three families, to increase the awareness of cancer in children and to encourage financial support to aid research into children’s cancer.

CIKA is committed to providing funding for research into solid tumours, the most common form of childhood cancer. The aim of CIKA is to stop children from ever contracting these types of cancer, but if they do, to ensure that the treatment they receive is successful. CIKA has actively supported research projects at the RCH with financial assistance since its inception, and will continue to do so until these types of cancers are cured.

What we are working on

CIKA has been supporting the Children’s Cancer Centre Tissue Bank since its inception. The Tissue Bank provides valuable samples for national and international research projects that allow researchers to:

  • understand the molecular mechanisms which lead to cancers
  • establish new molecular-based diagnostic tests which assist with the selection of the most appropriate treatments
  • investigate tumour biology using cell lines,
  • test new drugs and therapies before use in the clinic
  • identify new targets for therapy
  • reduce the debilitating side effects of treatment.

The funding provided to the Tissue Bank also pays for the after-hours and weekend collection of tumours, vital to establishing a large bank of tumours that can be made available for research.

CIKA also provides funding for the Solid Tumour Study Coordinator. This position facilitates solid tumour patients at the RCH being given the opportunity to participate in clinical trials. The trials undertaken cover a broad range of cancers.  This is in line with CIKA’s objective of funding research that encompasses all solid tumours, and has the potential to benefit children currently undergoing treatment.

We also fund research into Paediatric Brain Tumours. This involves the collection and creation of tumour models and the testing of systems using neurosphere, tissue culture and mouse models.

October gathering 2019

Office bearers

President: Sandra Lehrer
Vice President: Ellen Webb
Secretary: Wendy Halligan
Treasurer: Stephen Halligan


Sandra Lehrer

0409 369 853

[email protected]


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