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Introducing the Inaugural Coralee Jacobsen Award 2023

December 6, 2023

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A personal blog post from our founder, Kelly.

The Coralee Jacobsen Award

“Your mother’s been in a car accident. They’ve taken her in an ambulance to hospital.” – These are the words I heard on the phone one unsuspecting Monday afternoon. It’s the type of phone call you see in the movies, but never think you will actually be on the receiving end of.

You see, earlier this year my wonderful mum, Coralee, was involved in a car accident where she rolled her car and hit a tree at over 100km, on a country road past Roma, in Queensland due to exhaustion. I count my lucky stars she’s still with us today. But I’m getting ahead of myself in this story.

She was driving directly into the sun on a dangerous stretch of road in the country and she lost control of the car that it rolled and hit a tree at over 100km an hour. When she came to, she unbuckled her seatbelt, crawled out the window with broken bones and flagged down another car for help. Man, she is tough.

We are so, so lucky she is still alive and with us. She needed surgery and spent her post-op recovery with us in the city. Getting to spend that extra time together was an absolute gift.

My mum is an amazing woman, and a large inspiration behind CAKE and our values. I’ve always known this about my mum, but what this time reminded me of is what makes my Mum so special is not just her resilience (though she has that in spades), it’s her sense of humour, her unrelenting optimism and her ability to see the positive in any situation.

This time also made me stop and think how stupid it is that we only commemorate and celebrate people once they’re gone, and no longer with us.

And so the inaugural Coralee Jacobsen Award was formed. Every year it will be awarded to celebrate and acknowledge the key person in the CAKE team who lives and breathes all of CAKE’s values, but most importantly radiates optimism, humour, and spirit. We will be announcing this years’ winning recipient very soon.

As you can imagine, while it started out horrific, I and my family are beyond grateful that this story has a happy ending. And if you’ve gotten this far in reading, I hope you squeeze your people a little tighter today and always. And never forget what a difference optimism and having a good sense of humour can make, especially in shitty situations.

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