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Raising funds to treat metastatic colorectal cancer


$43,005 donated

Given by 256 generous donors in around 5 months

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Need help to fight Stage IV colorectal cancer

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  Auckland

Hello there ❀ I’m asking for help to raise funds for the treatment of my stage IV colorectal cancer. I really thought after a year of radiation and chemo, surgery and more chemo that I would be having a bit of a break from treatments but, a recent CT scan shows the cancer has now spread to my liver and possibly lungs. The not so great news is that the treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer includes drugs that are not currently funded here in New Zealand. The good news though is that I feel quite positive and have an amazing support crew of family and friends – and a strong belief and faith in God.

My proposed new treatment plan includes a chemotherapy drug FOLFIRI which is publicly funded and cetuximab, which is not funded. The cost for 12 cycles (approximately six months) of cetuximab is high - $56,992 NZD. Thankfully, the cost of drug is capped at $20,000, but I still need to pay to have it administered intravenously at $2400 per treatment, and for ongoing consultation fees ($225).

There is no guarantee this treatment is going to cure my cancer, but there is hope it will stop or slow the cancer and maybe shrink it to a stage that I can have surgery to remove any tumours. At the very least my treatment will give me some more time – and I desperately want to be around for my kids for as long as I can, and to continue to be with my wonderful husband, Fetu. These are the people that make me determined to beat the odds and seek the best medical care I can get.

Fetu and I both work full-time and as the main income earner for our family I have needed to work through most of my treatments and will keep working for as long as I possibly can, but we still won’t have the means to meet my medical expenses, and I need to ask for help.

As my medical situation changes, a different treatment could be suggested by my oncologist or other health specialists. I might therefore use raised funds to pay not only for cetuximab, but also for other medical expenses, to seek treatment overseas (e.g. UK and US) and to help meet my family’s expenses during this time. That is why I have opted to have an ‘open goal’ for this Givealittle page.

Through the power of people acting together, a little becomes a lot. Any donation, small or large, will be helpful and I would be hugely grateful. If a small regular payment for several months is more manageable, the Givealittle Plan makes it possible to make regular donations by setting up automatic payments.

Thank you for taking the time to read about my situation, and God bless you.

Use of funds

Money will be spent on drugs that the NZ public system doesn't fund, other medical expenses including possibly seeking treatments overseas, and meeting family's expenses during this time.


Latest update

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New update  27 October 2019

God is good. All the time.

All the time. God is good.

Hello beautiful people.

Some news to update - on Wednesday Fetu, my two sisters, my dear friend Penny and I met with my oncologist regarding the results from my CT scan after 6 rounds of folfiri and 4 cetuximab treatments.

I am happy to report that the doctor was pretty pleased with the scan results. It showed the tumours in my liver have reduced in size, some by as much as half and my CEA marker has also come down. The scan however also showed some new spots on my lungs, which are too small to diagnose, as well as a couple of other anomalies which he will get checked out, but in general he thought my body was responding well to the current treatment, and for now the plan is for treatment to continue. Further down the track he is hopeful the liver tumours can be surgically removed, but further scans will be needed before then to check the spots on my lungs, and make sure no other tumours have appeared anywhere else.

On that note I just want to say thank you so much for your donations which has enabled me to fund cetuximab. I believe having this together with folfiri made a big impact on its effectiveness. With 4 treatments done we’ve paid nearly $30,000, a significant amount of money that we would have really struggled to come up with without your help. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Your donation has made a difference and I am grateful to each and everyone of you. Our whole family is grateful to all of you.

From the time I found out I was Stage IV I have had this peace that only comes when you give it all to GOD and surrender. Through this journey I have been a receiver of HIS unwavering love in many shapes and forms .... I have met some of the best people and have found out just how truly loved I am by so many. Words will never be able to describe how thankful and blessed I am.

The photo I’m sharing with you is another example of God's amazing love shown by my EFKS Grey Lynn mafutaga aiga. This was taken at a Bingo Musika fundraiser event held on Fri 20th Sept - to date I am still speechless and overwhelmed by such an incredible and selfless act of love. Thank you!

#loveisbiggerthancancer

Read 2 more updates


Latest donations

  • Dina

    Dina on 09 Nov 2019

    $100

    Thinking of you and your family x

    $100

  • Lauren

    Lauren on 29 Oct 2019

    Private

    Thank you for your recent update. So pleased that things are going well for you. Best wishes to you x

    Private

  • Guest Donor

    Guest Donor on 27 Oct 2019

    $50

    Arohanui

    $50

  • Ma Ward Havelock North Hawkesbay

    Ma Ward Havelock North Hawkesbay on 13 Oct 2019

    Private

    all the best

    Private

  • Guest Donor

    Guest Donor on 03 Oct 2019

    Private

    Dear Penelope, although we haven't met, your situation has been brought to my attention by a friend. So I just wanted to contribute and send you my positive energy and loving thoughts.

    Private


Who's involved?

Penelope Tevita Tuatagaloa's avatar
Created by, and paying to a verified bank account of, Penelope Tevita Tuatagaloa

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This page was created on 26 Jul 2019 and closes on 25 Jan 2020.
$43,005 donated

Given by 256 generous donors in around 5 months

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