Biggest Morning Tea at Coastal Turf

Come and help us raise money for the Cancer Council at our Biggest morning tea here at the farm on the 24th May 2023. 

As many of you know Coastal Turf is a family farm run by John Commens, my father, and I . We have a small, but magnificent team around us to ensure we can produce and deliver the best turf grasses to our regions; Ranging from the top Gold Coast right down to the Ballina Coast. 

Being an intergenerational farm gives us the unique perspective of knowing what all different types of people, young and not so young, want in their lawn. It also allows me to work with my father John, every day. 

I was never so thankful of this as I was about 2 years ago when he was given a cancer diagnosis. After a routine colonoscopy, Dad was diagnosed with cancer in his large intestines, as well as in his liver. After two very intense and painful operations, Dad had part of his bowel removed, as well as part of his liver. When Dad was first diagnosed it was extremely stressful for everyone involved. Our family, but also for the team of wonderful people who we work with. 

My Dad went from being a strong farmer, working on machinery and harvesting and delivering turf, to bed ridden within a week. This was the beginning of a long journey forward.

I’m told that at most peoples work places when someones family member becomes ill, the people at work will rally around and support them, picking up slack where they can, allowing the person with Cancer their lives to focus on getting better. At Coastal Turf, we only have a small tight knit crew, whom we all have become very close to. So when cancer struck down Dad, all of our team where shocked and saddened. Everyone was affected. But like all good families, our team rallied together and supported Dad, and each other , all while ensuring that we continued to produce and and deliver beautiful turf grasses. 

Dad went through a year of chemotherapy. A long and harrowing experience. From my point of view was devastating. From his point of view, even worse. The way that it stole my father was one of the cruelest things I have seen. My Dad went from a strong, positive speaking man, who could still throwing pallets around the farm and into the harvester at 70, to a small broken framed man who was not able to walk to the bathroom unassisted. Cancer was horrid, but chemo was terrible. 

After a year of knowing the nurses names off by heart, and travelling backwards and forwards to the hospital, Dad was told he didn’t have to do any more chemo. And the smile slowly returned to my Father’s face.  

Our team at Coastal Turf ran with all our good days as well as bad. And to our team,  I cannot thank them enough. To all our clients that sympathised, supported and graced us patience when a delivery was a little late, thank you so much. We are so lucky that we had so many good people around us to support our journey. 

Over the last couple of months, the good Doctors discovered the cancer in Dads blood again. Which means that now the C word is staying in our family for the fore seeable future. And it has become a part of our every day lives. The nurses at the radiation unit will now know my Dads name really well, and I’m sure he will advise them on the best grass for their lawn. Radiation does not seem to attack Dad as much as chemo. So it is all looking a lot more positive.

Dad is slowly recovering. and things are getting into a new normal.

Because at Coastal Turf we know how hard and horrid cancer is, how much it can affect you physically and mentally, your team is holding a Biggest morning tea. We want to help raise money to support those who may not be so lucky to have a wonderful team around them, or amazing clients, or family so close you work and support each other every day. 

Come down to our farm and enjoy a tea or coffee on the turf. Nibble on a scone, brownie, little cakes and sandwiches while we play Tea’n’Turf games. All while fundraising a little money for the how also have the big C word in their every day lives. Watch our Facebook page for more details, or email Jayne in the office for updates.