It was an emotionally-charged atmosphere at Lake Wendouree on Sunday morning as hundreds of people crossed the finish line of the Mother's Day Classic to support women and families touched by breast cancer.
More than 650 people participated in the six-kilometre run, 12km run or 6km walk, braving the cool and showery weather.
The tears and the hugs at the finish line show it is worth it for everybody to keep coming up and doing it every year.Rebecca Koroneos, organiser
For some it was their first year participating in the event, while others had run the Lake Wendouree course on Mother's Day in previous years.
Completing the 6km Mother's Day Classic Walk was a first for mother, daughter and granddaughter Joyce, Narelle and Maddy.
The family participated in the walk in memory of Joyce's sister who died eight weeks ago after 23 years battling breast cancer. Joyce was also diagnosed with breast cancer in October.
"It is very special. My aunt was special to us and Nan is a very special lady as well," daughter Narelle said.
"It is nice to do something together on Mother's Day to remember her and get together for a good cause, because that is what it is all about - helping other people who are going through what we went through."
Mother's Day Classic events nationwide raise funds for breast cancer research. The event has raised $35.3 million for the National Breast Cancer Foundation since it started in 1998.
See the gallery of photos below.
Ballarat's fundraising total for the 2019 event has not yet been counted, but it is hoped it will reach the $22,000 raised last year.
Each participant has their own story to tell.
It was an emotional day for Rosemary, Jessica and Tash from team Di's Legacy, who ran for their friend who died from cancer a couple of years ago.
"This is something we try to do every year because she was so special, so we do it in her memory," Tash said.
Mick Wallbank ran with his daughter Niamh, 8, and wife Rachael for his sister who was diagnosed in 2007.
"She was at the time donating a kidney to my dad and the secretory breast carcinoma was only found through that process of donating," he said.
"We are really thankful she went through that process, otherwise she wouldn't be with us now."
Ballarat Mother's Day Classic event organiser Rebecca Koroneos said so many of the participants crossed the finish line with tears in their eyes.
"There is significant heartfelt support for the whole event. It means so much for people individually for relatives and friends they may have lost or are still going through their cancer battle," she said.
"The tears and the hugs at the finish line show it is worth it for everybody to keep coming up and doing it every year."
READ MORE: Libs and Labor promise breast cancer fund
Sunday marked the 11th Mother's Day Classic hosted in Ballarat.
The event supports the National Breast Cancer Foundation's goal of zero deaths from breast cancer by 2030.
Statistics show one in seven women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime and 53 new cases are diagnosed every day.
In 2019, it is estimated that 3,090 people will lose their life to breast cancer, including 32 men.
Since 1994, the 5-year survival rate for breast cancer has improved from 76 per cent to 91 per cent.
Improvements in survival are attributed to earlier detection of breast cancer through regular mammograms and improved treatment outcomes for breast cancer.