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Production   /  Kirstie Boerst

Cancer in Covid

Cancer in Covid - The 2 Big Cs of my 20's

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Impact areas

HEALTH & WELLBEING

HUMAN RIGHTS & SOCIAL JUSTICE

WOMEN & GIRLS

YOUTH & EDUCATION

Crew

  • DIRECTOR Paul Mailath

  • PRODUCER Kirstie Boerst

Synopsis

DURATION: 58 MINUTES

Emili is a young 19-year-old actress just starting out in her adult life. She has been studying the performing arts degree at AIM and in April this year Emili was diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin Lymphoma after feeling unwell for at least the last 4 years. Covid-19 targets the immune system and ironically lymphoma cancer is the cancer of the immune system. After multiple misdiagnoses, Emili’s message is keep fighting for a diagnosis because your life might very well depend on it.

Cancer in Covid is the story of a young woman in Western Sydney who deserves to be heard after so many years of being ignored.

“Day 4 of my first Chemo cycle I remember trying to go from one side of my room to the other, I legit crawled like a baby, so de-humanising. If I can stop one person going through this, I will feel like I’ve accomplished something. Everything happens for a reason right?

I’m in the age group known to be affected by this type of cancer. Why wasn't it investigated earlier? Now I am enduring 8 days of Chemo with day 9 to 21 for recovery and this will be repeated at least 4 times. I’ll get through this but I can’t help thinking about an earlier diagnosis and how that would have impacted on my journey now.

I want to educate young people about how important it is to make them listen to you, make them keep looking if you aren’t feeling any better. I’m young, I should be able to jump around, dance and have fun with my friends. I couldn’t do all that and deep down I knew something was wrong.

My Mum and the passion of her European spirit got me a diagnosis, it shouldn’t be like that.” - Emili Milosevska September 2020.

Cancer in Covid will draw its narrative from gut wrenching journal entries presented to camera, home footage recorded by Emili while in hospital on her darkest days and interviews with the family who are getting her through this, the friends who are supporting her and the medics who are healing her.

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0.50% funded
  • $10,000.00

    FUNDING GOAL
  • $50.00

    FUNDS RAISED
  • March 2021

    PROJECT ENDS
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Issue Summary

A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing

“To learn that Emili had Stage 4 Cancer blindsided us all. I remember sitting in an online rehearsal for a production we were all working on at the beginning of Covid. Emili buzzed in from her hospital ward. I had been told a few days before but things moved pretty quickly from diagnosis to treatment and she was admitted into hospital very quickly. Production director Nathan Large read out a recount that Emili had written. It was directed at a young, healthy teenage cast and she was trying to tell them to make sure they look after themselves. Make sure that they are heard if they don’t feel well. The 8cm Tumour on her left lung that was pushing up against her heart and threatening her life was the result of at least 4 years of trying to be heard and not being listened to. I have always been an advocate for giving young people a voice. Making this documentary just seemed to be the right thing to do and attaching Emili a Co-Producer was a no brainer" Kirstie Boerst Producer

Impact

What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?

Emily has written some very raw, touching and sometimes gut wrenching journal entries while undergoing her treatment. These have already been filmed in segments to be inserted in the documentary and will form the main elements of our documentary Cancer in Covid and drive the story. They are compelling and give the audience a genuine sense of the heartbreak inside her and that has surrounded her throughout her journey.

Outcomes

What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?

We intend to educate young people on the importance of searching for a diagnosis and to never settle unless you are satisfied. Emili is in the fight for her life and she wants the world to know the importance of finding the right diagnosis. She is young, fit and otherwise healthy. She has always sensed something was wrong and after being told countless times that she was suffering from other health problems a GP finally agreed to order a CT Scan after her mother accompanied her to an appointment and insisted that she be referred for one. What follows is gut wrenching and compelling and the audience will see it all. Emili’s message to young people is to keep fighting for a diagnosis because your life might very well depend on it.

Activities

How will this documentary achieve its outcomes?

Producer Kirstie Boerst gave Emili a camera to document her early experiences in hospital, alone and diagnosed with Cancer. Hair Stylist Rose Amorelli who specialises in hair and beauty therapy for Cancer patients gave us all a unique insight into that side of the condition. The inspirational journey to find a gorgeous human hair wig that took us to Oxford street Sydney is compelling and uplifting on it’s own. We intend to partner with like minded organisations to deliver our message.

Stakeholders

How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?

We have a broadcast partnership with OzFlix TV for broadcast and we have establishing relationships with organisations that support our objectives.

Ron V Brown Wrote:
Ozflix will certainly be thrilled to screen the film on completion, either as an Ozflix Original, or otherwise if another broadcaster subsequently jumps in for first-run rights.

As I mentioned, the Ozflix Originals program is running well, and we have launched three new series exclusively on Ozflix in the past three months, "Outback Brothers" (hosted by Shane Jacobson), "Behind The Sash" and "Hoon Capital". These three documentary series all have significant social and educational benefits aside their highly entertaining stories and formats. And the first two series have attracted commercial funding through sponsorship, so a win-win all round. This documentary will travel worldwide to take the genuine story of a young woman’s struggle against terrible inequity in Western Sydney Australia to a worldwide audience.

Audience Engagement and Social Impact

What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?

We hope to empower young people and their parents and carers in all socio economic areas to take control of situations they find themselves in. We intend to educate young people on the importance of searching for a diagnosis and to never settle unless you are satisfied. Emili is in the fight for her life and she wants the world to know the importance of finding the right diagnosis. She is young, fit and otherwise healthy. She has always sensed something was wrong and after being told countless times that she was suffering from other health problems a GP finally agreed to order a CT Scan after her mother accompanied her to an appointment and insisted that she be referred for one. What follows is gut wrenching and compelling and the audience will see it all. Emili’s message to young people is to keep fighting for a diagnosis because your life might very well depend on it.

Measurement and Evaluation

What is the projects indicators for success?

It is anticipated that our OZ Flix audience in the first year will be in excess of 120,000 views based on promotion to be provided by the Producer and VbK productions.

It is understood that the program will remain available to view indefinitely.

We also intend to enter over 50 festivals with a short version to be produced for such purposes. The traier has already enjoyed some festival success with a recent finalist spot in the Next Level International Film Festival
This will highlight our cause and generate interest in the larger documentary which will screen on Oz Flix TV