Support our services

Marie Keating Foundation launch ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden at Bloom in the Park 2023

Marie Keating Foundation launch ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden at Bloom in the Park 2023

  • The ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden highlights the importance of cancer prevention and early detection at Bord Bia’s Bloom in the Park 2023, 1st – 5th
  • Almost 45,000 new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year in Ireland – One person is diagnosed with cancer every three minutes.

Dublin, May 31st, 2023 – The Marie Keating Foundation today unveiled their ‘Catching Cancer Early’ garden at Bord Bia’s Bloom in The Park, 2023.

Designed by award-winning Designer, Gardener and Landscaper, Robert Moore, the ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden highlights the importance of cancer prevention and early detection of cancer, and the positive outcomes and increased options available to patients when cancer is caught early.

Visitors can visit the Marie Keating Foundation Show Garden Number 8 from 1st June – 5th June at Bloom in the Park, at Phoenix Park, Dublin.

The garden design aims to ground visitors in the Irish cancer patient journey and illustrate the many paths of a cancer journey. On this journey, self-reflection and proactivity with our personal health are encouraged, highlighting that improved outcomes for patients CAN be achieved through early diagnosis and innovative cancer treatments. The difficulties faced on a cancer journey are also illustrated in the garden design, and the importance of accessing support from patient organisations like the Marie Keating Foundation is highlighted in the large, shaded trees dotted around the garden.

Inspired by his own experience of losing his mother to lung cancer, Gardener Robert Moore has incorporated creative elements into the garden, cognizant of the need to diagnose cancers early, and to illuminate that different paths and options are available to patients, at all stages of their cancer journey.

Cancer in Ireland: 4 in 10 cancers can be prevented through lifestyle changes and thanks to effective and efficient improvements in cancer treatment, as well as earlier detection, the likelihood of surviving many forms of cancer continues to increase.

The Marie Keating Foundation has been on this journey with Irish patients since 1998 and is one of the leading voices in Ireland for cancer prevention, awareness, and early detection. Their support services help patients navigate their individual cancer journeys, similar to the pathways present in the ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Garden.

Supporting this year’s campaign, Consultant Medical Oncologist, Professor Janice Walshe, said: “Many cancers experienced in Ireland can be prevented, or the outcomes of a positive cancer diagnosis can be improved if cancer can be caught early. Early detection empowers us to intervene when cancer is most vulnerable, increasing the chances of successful treatment and long-term survival. This can be achieved through simple check-ups, visiting your local GP, or attending a routine screening. By driving greater awareness of symptoms and cancers and ensuring that people have access to the supports required, people can catch cancer early.”


The Garden Design: The garden design consists of a charred boardwalk, representative of the cancer journey, which floats through dense seasonal planting. The planting reflects the beauty, hope, and positivity of the garden, and remains in stark contrast to the charred timber. These boardwalks lead to reflective water bowls, all of which aim to highlight the need for personal reflection, check-ups, and the role we can play ourselves in delivering better health outcomes when we can catch cancer early.

The large trees included in the garden provide shelter, support, and stillness, reflecting the place of the Marie Keating Foundation in the cancer journey, and the support available to anyone who needs it. The Marie Keating Foundation’s mission is to ‘make cancer less frightening by enlightening’ and aiming to create ‘a world free from the fear of cancer.’

Speaking about the garden design, Robert Moore, said: “The design this year incorporates many aspects identifiable to someone who has recently or ever had a cancer diagnosis, or who has a loved one who has experienced the journey. The supports available to people in this position are invaluable and come in the form of a friend, a family member, or organisations like the Marie Keating Foundation, who can ensure people are aware of the paths and options available to them, which might lighten the load along the way, or deliver more positive outcomes. I am excited to see how people respond to the garden this year, and really looking forward to welcoming everyone.”

This year, the ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden is sponsored by MSD and AstraZeneca.

Commenting on their participation at this year’s festival, CEO of the Marie Keating Foundation and cancer survivor, Liz Yeates said: “We are thrilled to be back at Bloom in the Park which is such a wonderful event which provides us with a great opportunity to reach people and to encourage visitors to pause and reflect on their own personal health. The garden is just one aspect of our activity at the festival and our aim of catching more cancers early. Our Mobile Information Unit and qualified nurses will also be present throughout the festival, encouraging participants to pause and reflect on their personal health, and how they can take control. We’re delighted to be working with Gardener Robert Moore this year in the design of the garden, and the concept has included many thoughtful elements reflective of the experiences of Irish cancer patients and their journeys. By increasing awareness of the options available and by recognising symptoms, cancer can be caught early, and people can live longer, fuller lives.”

This year, the ‘Catching Cancer Early’ Show Garden is sponsored by MSD and AstraZeneca.

Throughout the five days, the garden will be visited by cancer survivors and families affected by cancer, including those who have caught cancer early and who have had positive stories to tell as a result. This includes Dearbhaile O’Hare who recently finished treatment for cancer, has been a participant in our Survive and Thrive programme and who is now focused on her recovery and thriving after her  cancer diagnosis and treatment.

The Marie Keating Foundation’s Mobile Information Unit will also be located at the main entrance of Bloom each day and its nurses will be speaking to the public about the early signs of cancer and about the importance of health screening. Members of the public will be invited to pay tribute to a loved one affected by cancer, by pinning a personalised ribbon to the tribute wall in the garden.

Mairead McCaul, Managing Director, MSD Ireland said “We are delighted to co-sponsor the Marie Keating Foundation Garden at Bloom this year. The footfall at Bloom in the Park each year represents an incredible opportunity to reach people from all over Ireland who visit the festival and to encourage them to look at their personal health. The Marie Keating Foundation does incredible work each year to platform cancer prevention, awareness, and support and this year’s garden will play an important role in raising awareness of early detection and how prevention, screening and treatment can improve patient outcomes”.

Dan Wygal, Country President, AstraZeneca Ireland said: “AstraZeneca is proud to support the Marie Keating Foundation’s “Catching Cancer Early” Show Garden at this year’s Bloom. Evidence increasingly shows the critical connection between earlier detection and positive patient outcomes for people with cancer, so this year’s theme is particularly relevant. We hope that visitors to the garden over the next few days reflect on the strong message it conveys and that they and their loved ones leave more attuned to the early signs and symptoms of cancer. We believe the extensive work of the Marie Keating Foundation, including here at Bloom, plays a vital role in spreading awareness and providing support to patients, their families, and the broader community. Community engagement by a strong patient champion, like the Marie Keating Foundation, is one of the key ways we can play a role in ultimately turning the tide against cancer as the leading cause of death in Ireland. “

The garden will be donated after Bloom to The Recovery Haven in Tralee.




About the Designer


Robert Moore has always been passionate about architecture, design, and outdoor spaces. Having studied in University College Dublin and Bordeaux University, he spent time travelling and working, before returning to Ireland in 1998 to pursue his career.

Robert’s mission is to merge ‘landscaping and lifestyle’, whether in a private or public setting. He delivers a unique and engaging experience both at a visual and interactive level.

Robert won a silver-gilt medal and the People’s Choice Award for his Memories Are Made of This – Dementia: Understand Together Garden in 2019. Last year his Enable Ireland Respite Garden received a silver medal.


About the Marie Keating Foundation:

It is 25 years since the Marie Keating Foundation was set up, following Marie’s death from breast cancer in 1998. After losing their mother, the Keating family promised that they would do everything they could to ensure men and women in every community in Ireland had access to the necessary information to prevent cancer or detect it at its earliest stages. The Marie Keating Foundation supports families across Ireland at every step of their cancer journey.

Through its community information service, the Foundation’s nurses have engaged with over 600,000 people about the causes and risk factors of cancer. The Foundation offers national cancer awareness and education campaigns covering the most common cancers affecting people in Ireland, including bowel, testicular, breast, cervical, lung, prostate, and skin cancer.

Given the fact that there are more than 200,000 cancer survivors in Ireland today, the Marie Keating Foundation supports cancer survivors through its Positive Living and Survive & Thrive programmes, which are run nationwide, free of charge, for men and women. Over 1,200 cancer survivors have attended courses and seminars since the programmes’ inception in 2014. The Survive & Thrive Programme is aimed at assisting anyone who has come through treatment to adjust to their ‘new normal’ and offer practical advice and help in many areas of life including diet and exercise, emotional support and adjusting to returning to work. The Positive Living programme is for men and women living with advanced cancer and supports them in coping with their specific physical and psychological needs. The Foundation’s recently launched survivorship website has a host of information and advice for anyone living with or beyond cancer.

The Marie Keating Foundation has best-of-class corporate governance structures having achieved the ‘Triple Lock’ standard for best practice governance in the charity sector and having won a Good Governance award in 2021.

Follow the Marie Keating Foundation on Facebook,, Twitter, @mariekeating and Instagram,


Bord Bia’s Bloom:

Bord Bia’s Bloom event will take place in the Phoenix Park, Dublin from Thursday 1st June – Monday 5th June. This year marks the 17th anniversary of Bloom. As Ireland’s largest gardening, food, and family festival it is now a key feature of the June bank holiday weekend, with more than 110,000 visitors last year. Bord Bia’s annual showcase of the best of Ireland’s horticulture and food industry will once again feature a range of impressive show gardens, food features and family entertainment. Tickets are on sale now on Don’t forget, kids go free! Follow Bloom on Facebook, and join the conversation on Twitter,