Working Towards a Better Tomorrow
Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Australia (TASCA) is a not-for-profit organisation that was originally known as Thalassaemia Society of Victoria (TSV) when it was founded in 1976. TSV was founded by medical professionals to lobby government authorities for support into medical research and the provision of treatment facilities for those living with Thalassaemia and other related genetic blood disorders.
The task before the TSV was not easy, as many of its members and those affected by Thalassaemia or Sickle Cell Disease, predominately came from non-English speaking migrant and refugee communities. Thus, linguistic and cultural barriers, played a significant role in preventing those affected in gaining access to family planning, medical support, advice and treatment. Another challenge was the urgent need to encourage medical providers and governments to become aware of genetic blood disorders, and to provide necessary support and funding for those affected, the provision of treatment facilities and for medical research.
Eventually the TSV helped form counselling support groups and called upon the services of professional counsellors, for ensuring the general well-being of those affected directly or indirectly by Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disease. Numerous recreational events were also organised to augment these efforts towards general health, morale and well-being. Since then, people living with genetic blood disorders and their families, have become an important part of TASCA by providing them with support, education and an advocacy network.
TASCA is a small but dedicated group that puts great effort towards raising public awareness of genetic blood disorders like Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disease, and encourages the general public to seek blood testing and family planning as measures to identify and deal with the presence of these genetic blood disorders. TASCA has developed a free information and education program that has been implemented within the wider community.
TASCA also aims to empower individuals to maximise their life experience and potential, and to not have their illness define and limit them.