Katie's Chemo Fund

$23,789 of $45,000 goal
Given by 270 generous donors in around 12 months

My name is Katie Rose, I am 21 years old, & I am fundraising money for my maintenance chemotherapy treatment that is non-government funded.

Auckland

My name is Katie Rose Clausen and I am twenty one years old. I was studying Fashion Design and Business at AUT University and was on my way to graduating in 2016, before a roadblock was thrown in my way. On Christmas Eve of 2015, I was diagnosed with Stage 3A Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.

Before I was diagnosed with Lymphoma, I was experiencing intensive tummy pains and I never felt quite right. I had a large egg shape growth that had formed in my cheek and was unable to work or go to class, constantly feeling sick and extremely tired. After seeing several different doctors, I was admitted into Waikato hospital to undergo a surgical biopsy, a bone marrow biopsy, a lumbar puncture and multiple different scans. It was on Christmas Eve that my doctor confirmed our worst fears, and informed me that I had cancer. Not only was the lump in my face confirmed as cancer, but I found out that I had growths in my neck, chest, groin and a 11x17 growth in my tummy! Which explained all the cramps.

So, what is Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma?

Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma is a cancer that starts in cells called lymphocytes, which are part of the body's immune system. Lymphocytes are in the lymph nodes and other lymphoid tissues (such as the spleen and bone marrow). It was a shock to be diagnosed with Lymphoma which I had never heard of before, let alone to hear the doctor say it could potentially take my life. I thought I was being Punk’D for the longest time and was waiting for someone to shout, “it’s a joke!”.

I have undergone five chemo treatments and have just one treatment left to go. And thankfully, chemo has being doing it’s job! My doctor recently confirmed that the large 11x17 growth in my tummy has shrunk to just 5x2cms and all other growths had disappeared. Whilst there is still a small growth left, my doctor also confirmed there are no active cancer cells left in my body! Hooray!

But as much of a blessing as this news is, unfortunately I am not completely out of the woods. The funny thing with “Follicular” Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, it likes to come back. But my doctor has a plan to combat this, with maintenance chemo, every three months for the next two years. It is the hope that with this maintenance chemo, I will be able to prolong the length of my life and keep the cancer at bay till I'm old and wrinkly. This is totally doable, with the use of Rituximab. The upside to this, is the chemo drug they intend to use has no nasty side effects, but the downside is, that “Rituximab” is not government funded and has to be administered in a private hospital because of this. This means that me and family will be have to pay for the Rituximab, and the private hospital fees, which over two years will amount to $45,000.

I started this Give a Little Page because any little bit would help me and my family through this trying financial time and any little amount of money donated would be more than a blessing and half. I, and will continue to be fundraising for as long as we can!

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THANK YOU FROM MUM  16 December 2016

When Katie was diagnosed with cancer we were completely overwhelmed. It was like been thrown into a foreign country with a language we didn't recognise and a culture we had never experienced and it was utterly terrifying.

Besides the shock, fear and worry we felt for our daughter, this new culture also included everything from the amount of medications and the order of them, neutrophils, sun exposure, does she wear a mask in public or not and what is a neutropenic diet and how do we know we're doing it properly?

It doesn't sound like much but her life depended on these small things. Then to top it all off we finally get her through the worst part and in that wonderful moment of receiving clear PET scan results (joy of all joy!!!) we are also told that that the next two years of maintenance treatment will cost more money than we could have imagined. Maybe overwhelmed is an understatement?

So, as the most awful year draws to a close, we want to say the biggest THANK YOU to everyone who has donated to us. In difficult times like these, words cannot adequately express exactly how much gratitude we feel towards every single one of you.

Your love and kindness have meant everything to us and the sense of community we have felt has been what has sustained us. Thank you.

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Latest donations

Guest Donor
Guest Donor on 08 Mar 2017
$71
Benjamin
Benjamin on 24 Feb 2017
Kia ora Katie. I hope you make the 45k, send you good vibes and dollars. peace yo Arohanui
$15
Laura
Laura on 24 Feb 2017
All the best Katie! It's great to hear that things are going well!
$20
Christi
Christi on 24 Feb 2017
I'm sorry I can't give as much as I'd like but I figured every bit counts. All my love to you Katie
$30
Bobbi
Bobbi on 09 Feb 2017
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This campaign started on 11 Mar 2016 and ended on 10 Mar 2017.