Janine's Story

THE JANINE CHALWELL GRANT Memorial Grant for Melanoma Research

Janine Chalwell embraced life. She filled every moment with love, laughter, kindness and joy. When she learned she would not survive her cancer she had nothing left to do on her bucket list.

“I wake up every day living the dream…I don’t want to change anything.”

Janine Chalwell (centre) and family Janine was loved and admired by many. A daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, friend, sports coach, party planner, world traveller and passionate advocate for her many community interests. Her backyard parties were legendary, often launched with the pop of a champagne cork and concluded with the rising of the sun. Everyone was invited.

Janine was born on the 24th July 1958 and passed away on the 20th September 2020, aged just 62. With the support of her devoted husband, children and many cherished friends, she fought a courageous battle with melanoma; a battle she was ultimately unable to win.

Her family have resolved her fight will not be in vain.

Following her diagnosis of melanoma, Janine was cared for by Clinical Professor Adnan Khattak, Medical Oncologist and Medical Oncology Clinical Trials Lead at Fiona Stanley Hospital. Since his early training in the United Kingdom Prof Khattak has had a resounding passion for research. He is at the vanguard of oncology research with an esteemed international reputation and a commitment to the very best outcomes for his patients.

Professor Khattak believes that to be the best doctor you can for your patients you must be committed to research. While he knows he cannot save everyone, he also knows that it is with the rapid development of knowledge through discovery, and novel treatments through trials, that we can offer the best hope for our patients with a terminal illness.

“How I treat melanoma now compared with how I used to treat it five years ago, is completely different, and it’s likely to keep changing in the coming years. The long-term outcomes for melanoma patients have almost doubled in that time with the novel therapies that we use these days. It’s encouraging for us and encouraging for the patient that things are changing for good. The improvement in the outcomes of our melanoma patients have obviously come through clinical research.”

Prof Khattak says Janine was a very kind and humble person well supported by Chris, her family and friends

“She continued to surprise me with her resilience to fight the aggressive melanoma that she had. I am very happy to have had the opportunity to care for Janine in this difficult period but very sad that we could not win the battle for her. With the help of clinical research, hopefully we will be able to save many patients like Janine in the coming years.”

We must continue to invest in research. In 2017 Spinnaker Health Research Foundation awarded Prof Khattak a $100,000 grant to better understand the efficacy of immunotherapy treatment for patients with metastatic melanoma. This research has helped doctors target treatments more specifically to each patient, improving outcomes and reducing unnecessary interventions which might be ineffectual with unnecessary side-effects.

Research is the only way we will continue to learn, improve and, ultimately, save more lives. Janine’s family know this, and they are asking for you to help them in memory of the wife, mother and grandmother they loved so very much.

In December 2020 the family established The Janine Chalwell Grant to fund melanoma research. The grant will be awarded annually to support research that has the potential to rapidly evolve clinical knowledge, translate to improvements in diagnosis and treatment and above all else, lead to a better outcome for our patients.

We believe there will be a day in our lifetime when we will celebrate a cure that will impact us all. With your help, we will get there.”



Donate today to support research

Stay up to date