Women who give a lot now need us to give a little

Women who give so much to their families and communities now need help from the community to contribute to funding the medicines they need to treat their advanced breast cancer. These medicines help extend lives and improve quality of life. They are listed in international guidelines as the treatments that should be provided and they are funded across the developed world, but they are not funded in New Zealand.

Below are Givealittle pages from women with advanced breast cancer who have agreed to share their stories.

Terre Nicholson: Click here: Givealittle page

Terre works full time as an environmental consultant and mentors the younger people she works with. She works hard to make NZ a better place - with activities ranging from cleaning up contaminated sites to being a leading campaigner for better access to medications and better cancer care. Terre is the organiser of a petition delivered to MPs calling for government funding of the medicine Ibrance for advanced breast cancer. The petition has more than 47,700 signatures and going up every day. She is also the “adopted” mom for two young women who have lost their mothers to cancer. Now Terre needs help to fund Ibrance and Faslodex. She comes from a family that never asked for help or handouts so this is a challenge for her to ask.

Kate Gibbs: Click here: Givealittle page

Kate says: Help me help women with Metastatic Breast Cancer.  Kate is self-funding her own Ibrance and letrozole for metastatic breast cancer. She wants to help other women who can’t afford to pay from their own money to have access to these drugs, which are not funded by the Government. Through this Givealittle page, she would like to leave behind a legacy by establishing a fund to help other New Zealand women to receive this treatment.

Donna Ewan MacMillan: Click here: Givealittle page

Donna was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011, aged 37. The mother of three had no history of breast cancer in her family so it was a shock. In May 2018 she heart-breakingly learned that the cancer had come back and this time it was in her bones. Currently there is no cure for her diagnosis and they have estimated that she has less than two to three years to live. She is seeking raising funds for Ibrance to prolong her life and give her more time with her family.

Karen Nimmo: Click here: Givealittle page

Karen’s motto is to “love life”. She is raising money for treatment with Ibrance. In October 2018, after being breast cancer free for 7 years, she was diagnosed with Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer. Among numerous fundraising endeavours to help other people, in 2013, she set up an Air New Zealand team to take part in the inaugural “Ride to Conquer Cancer” which is a 200km cycle ride to support ground-breaking research and clinical trials at the Auckland Cancer Society Research Centre (ACSRC). Her team raised an impressive $50,000.

Sheryl Martin: Click here: Givealittle page

Sheryl is a mum, grandmother, sister and wife who is fighting cancer for the third time. She is a survivor advocate supporting survivors and their family/whanau through the criminal justice system. Sheryl worked for Victim Support for 14 years helping thousands of victim/survivors. She is seeking help to pay for Ibrance. Pharmac will not fund the drug that will prolong Sheryl’s life even though it is funded in most comparable countries.

Nicola Smythe: Click here: Givealittle page

Nicola is funrdaising for Ibrance and fulvestrant, to help extend her life to be here for her daughters and family as long as possible. She is 49 years and lives with her young daughters, aged 8 and 10. She was diagnosed with metastatic (advanced/terminal) breast cancer in 2012. Since that time, she has used a variety of drugs to control the cancer, but unfortunately she is am now nearing the end of drug options that are funded here in New Zealand. She is fundraising for Ibrance and fulvestrant.


1 June 2019




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