Welcome to the Cancer Society, Otago and Southland Division, an Incorporated Society and autonomous Division of the Cancer Society of New Zealand. We are registered under the Charity Commission (CC23699).

We are one of six Divisions of the Cancer Society nationally, who all have their own Boards and Governance structure. In the Otago and Southland Division, Peter Hutchison is Chair of a nine person Board representing both Otago and Southland regions.

Governance - Structure and Policy

Our Board


Our Organisation

We work to improve well-being in Otago and Southland by reducing the incidence and impact of cancer. We do this through Supportive Care services, Health Promotion and information and by funding Research in the region and nationally. We raise money locally, to support local services.


What we do

Our Supportive Care services are accessible across Otago and Southland and are designed to help patients, carers, friends and family better manage the impact of cancer. We have a team of 14 Supportive Care nurses and staff who can meet with anyone affected by any cancer and who needs support.

Our Health Promotion team focus on reducing the risk of cancer with the aim of reducing cancer for future generations. We provide advice and information on how to reduce the likelihood of getting some cancers.

And in cancer research, as part of the Cancer Society of New Zealand, we help fund the largest non-Government programme in the country including the Cancer Society Social and Behavioural Research Unit based in Dunedin.



We have more than 1000 volunteers in the region who gift their time in a number of ways to support our work. The support of volunteers is vital, without it we could not provide our services free of charge or raise the funds we need.



Because we do not receive any direct Government funding, we rely on the generosity of communities in Otago and Southland to enable us to provide our free services. We raise money locally, to support local services.

Find out more about the ways you can make regular or one-off donations that make a difference to local people affected by cancer

Find out how to take part in a fundraiser or event that supports the Cancer Society.


Our History

On 23 October 1929 the first regional Division of the British Empire Cancer Campaign started in Dunedin, and with Southland support, we became the Otago and Southland Division. Sir Louis Barnett was our first chairman continuing until 1943.

In 2014 we celebrated 85 years of service in Otago and Southland. Over those years, there has been tremendous growth in the range of services we provide and the geographical area we cover. We have built on a proud history of cancer research, to now provide a variety of Supportive Care services and Health Promotion Programmes accessible throughout the region.

We continue to develop our services and programmes complementing what other Divisions and the National Office do so we can provide the cancer support and information needed.