Cheryl Koenig launches fifth book In My Blood, inspired by personal journey

New chapter: Author Cheryl Koenig is launching her new book by raising funds for carer services in St George and Sutherland Shire.

New chapter: Author Cheryl Koenig is launching her new book by raising funds for carer services in St George and Sutherland Shire.

Menai author and carers' advocate Cheryl Koenig is proud of many things she has achieved, but her latest project has particular personal significance.

Mrs Koenig is launching her fifth book, titled In My Blood, which takes a turn into exploring her own battle after being diagnosed with blood cancer.

It is described as a sequel to Paper Cranes, which detailed her journey surrounding her son Jono and his accident, after which she became his carer.

The former (2009) NSW Woman of the Year is an ambassador for carers - a role that began after Jono, 34, was hit by a speeding car at age 12.

In My Blood is a personal memoir about what happens to families when the primary carer is faced with a life-threatening illness.

"It's about perseverance, resilience and of course, familial love," Mrs Koenig said.

"My title of carer tells you more about me, my values and personal ethos than any other role or accolade because, to me, there's nothing more important than enhancing the health and happiness of someone you love."

Dedicated carer: Cheryl Koenig with her son Jono, 34. Mrs Koenig has been his carer since he was a child.

Dedicated carer: Cheryl Koenig with her son Jono, 34. Mrs Koenig has been his carer since he was a child.

To mark the book's launch, Mrs Koenig is hosting a fundraiser on June 21 at Club Central Menai, with all money going to Sutherland Shire Carer Support Service (CSS).

The service lost much of its funding from state and federal government cuts this year, and was forced to scale back its reach in the community.

"There are over 900,000 unpaid carers in NSW and three million Australia-wide," Mrs Koenig said.

"Unfortunately these amazing people fall into the highest demographic of people who suffer from chronic illness and pain. As an unpaid carer for my son Jono, I have devoted a large part of my life to raising awareness of the valuable, and often unrecognised, work carers do within society every single day."

Club Central Menai has jumped on board to provide ongoing support the service via ClubGRANTS.

National Australia Bank has backed the cause, joining as a principal event partner with a $10,000 donation. The event is also sponsored by AMP Advice.

Carer Support Service Manager, Tracy Sami, says Mrs Koenig's support is a valuable contribution.

"It's quite a confronting statistic that every single one of us will be touched by caring at some stage of our lives - either as a care-giver or a care-recipient," she said.

"CSS aims to be a voice for carers and provide support to those who unfortunately are not widely recognised for the vital role they play. With the roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme and My Aged Care, our government funding has been cut. We are so grateful to our ambassador, Cheryl Koenig, for the support she has always shown."

Club Central president Brian Cloney encourages the community to help out.

"This is an opportunity for all individuals and organisations to support and celebrate those who care for and enable people with disabilities, chronic illness and the elderly to remain living healthily and safely in the community," he said.

"We are in absolute admiration of Cheryl Koenig and the Carer Support Service's work and I hope that businesses and community-minded people will support this very important event."

The event has a 'ruby ball' theme, which also acknowledges Mrs Koenig's 40th wedding anniversary with her husband Rob, being celebrated this year.

NSW senator Kristina Keneally will attend the lauch, after she supported Mrs Koenig's first book launch.

There are still several tickets left for the 6.30pm ball.

Tickets are $120 per person, with a $20 discount for carers.

Tickets can be purchased from reception at Club Central Menai, by calling 9532 1800 or online.

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