Cancer journey inspires baking marathon

CUPCAKES never tasted so good.

The humble cupcake has raised nearly $50,000 for cancer research thanks to the dedication of Inverloch’s Andrew and Sheila Downey.

For five years they have been baking and selling their famed cupcakes to campers along Inverloch’s foreshore camping ground and locals, as well as Cranbourne Secondary College where they teach, and the Berwick community where they primarily live.

Their fundraising efforts are now nearing $50,000. Not only is that figure remarkable, but so is the number of cupcakes they have baked and sold to accumulate that total: nearly 16,000.

That’s a lot of flour, icing and time by the oven, but the cupcakes have attracted quite a following due to the Downeys’ culinary skills and the fact the cupcakes are made from a recipe from London’s famed Hummingbird Bakery.

“It’s about awareness. Everyone has got their cancer story,” Sheila said.

“If people have lost someone or have been through it themselves, just being able to have a chat about it is a good thing.”

She has her own story, having undergone a mastectomy 10 days after being diagnosed with breast cancer and last year, underwent breast reconstruction surgery.

The Downeys began selling cupcakes to raise the entry fee to enter the walking event, a Weekend to End’s Women’s Cancers, which has since morphed into the One Day to Conquer Cancer walk for Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

In 2017, the 25km walk took them from Albert Park to Brighton via Elsternwick, Caulfield and St Kilda, along with daughters Catherine and Nicole, and Nicole’s husband Caleb.

Andrew and Sheila continue baking cupcakes year round, selling special cakes for Easter, Mother’s Day and Christmas. In the lead-up to last Christmas Eve, they received orders totalling 28 dozen cakes – or 336.

These summer holidays, they have brought several hundred cupcakes to Inverloch and sold 230 cakes over two days to foreshore campers.

“One lady remembered us from last year and wanted salted caramel, but all we had was chocolate and vanilla,” Sheila said.

Last Wednesday, they headed to the Cape Paterson Caravan Park for further fundraising.

Having caught the walking bug, the Downeys last year completed The Bloody Long Walk, a 35km walk in Melbourne to raise funds for the Australian Mitochrondial Disease Foundation and sold cupcakes to raise funds too.

Flavours vary from the mainstays of vanilla and chocolate, to passionfruit, berry, salted caramel, mint, and sometimes coconut, Baileys and Kahlua.

All proceeds to Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

Orders for cupcakes can be placed via the Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/cupcakes4cancer1

Food for a cause: Andrew and Sheila Downey of Inverloch have sold nearly 16,000 cupcakes to raise just short of $50,000 for cancer research.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=23696

Posted by on Jan 9 2018. Filed under Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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