“You might not know me, but I am an energetic 43-year-old woman with cancer,” reads the first line in Kate Hosey’s GoFundMe introduction. If you don’t know Kate, she’s a long-time Revelstoke community member; she managed the Roxy Theatre for seven years, owned a painting and decorating company, and right now, she’s fighting for her life against stage four Metastatic Breast Cancer.
National Metastatic Breast Cancer Awareness Day is today, October 13. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a time to spread awareness for a disease that has unfortunately touched many lives.
To support Kate’s fight, her community will rally together on October 21, 2022, for a day of giving, aptly named ‘No One Fights Alone.‘
No One Fights Alone is working with Revelstoke community partners for the one-day blitz to raise money for Kate’s life-saving treatment. Less than 5% of breast cancer funds go to metastatic cancer. The campaign will donate 10% of funds raised on October 21 to METAvivor, an organization dedicated to funding research for metastatic breast cancer.
Kate’s fight against breast cancer
Kate’s fight with cancer began in April of 2021 as stage two breast cancer that quickly turned into stage four metastatic cancer. Doctors gave her a timeline, estimating that she only had until April 2022 to live. But Kate was not willing to accept an expiry date.
“But remarkably, I am alive, actually feeling pretty good, and certainly not ready to die,” says Kate.
Kate’s cancer is aggressive, known as ‘triple-negative breast cancer.’ Triple-negative breast cancer means there are no actionable targets to treat as with hormone-positive breast cancer. It’s the rarer type, affecting about 15% of breast cancer patients and has the worst prognosis. Kate says 95% of hormone-positive breast cancer patients are expected to live five years or more, but that figure drops to 14% for triple negative.
“The fact it had already escaped the breast into the lymphs showed that mine was highly aggressive,” says Kate. “This didn’t deter me; I’m determined to be within that 14% that made five years and longer.”
Chemotherapy, immunotherapy treatment, and surgery have failed to stop the growth of Kate’s cancer which has now spread to her liver. But, as the biggest advocate for her health and the life she has yet to live, Kate hasn’t given up.
“So what next in the battle? My research led me to various new cutting-edge techniques that are being practiced elsewhere in the world; I certainly wasn’t going to roll over and call it quits,” she says.
Kate researched ground-breaking new treatments, one of which was at a leading clinic in Spain.
“So then the push really started to get me there ASAP,” she said. “A new GoFundMe was set up with the clinic costs as the specific target. The funding drive was successful through the immense generosity of friends, family, community, and complete strangers.”
Kate says this high-tech cancer treatment is still in its infancy and will hopefully be rolled out in 10-15 years. “But I didn’t have that long to wait,” she says.
Kate was able to begin the life-saving treatment in Spain on September 26, with an 80% deposit, thanks to the help of her community’s fundraising. “Cancer is a full-time job that doesn’t pay well,” she says, half-jokingly.
So far, her appeal has reached two-thirds of her target through a GoFundMe campaign, thanks to the generosity of family, friends and the local communities of her hometown of Llanidloes, Wales, where her father still lives, her university town of Cheltenham and here in B.C., where she lives with her partner and two dogs.
Kate wants to raise awareness for the ‘killer’ that is metastatic breast cancer, starting by raising awareness of her journey.
“As a stage 4 patient (terminal, in standard of care terms, but I prefer the word chronic as I believe this can be managed successfully), I am going to be living with this for the rest of my life, but I plan for my life to be long and productive if the stars align,” says Kate. “I am happy to be at forefront of pushing the scientific boundaries, helping the medical world understand cancer better and how to apply it in real-world terms to other patients. Together we will move forward.”
No One Fights Alone — how to get involved.
The campaign on October 21 will partner with businesses like Dose Coffee and The Roxy Theatre, donating a portion of their day’s sales to the cause.
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No One Fights Alone is looking for other community partners interested in getting involved. The campaign suggests a few ways to participate in the No One Fights Alone day of giving, such as donating a portion of the day’s sales or holding a collection bin for Kate’s cause.
“We hope that you consider joining us in this fight; every little bit helps, and Kate can’t do this alone,” says friend and campaign organizer Brittany Lowden
Please get in touch with Brittany Lowden at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 778-228-2277, to get involved. Learn more about what businesses will be supporting the day of giving on October 21 at the No One Fights Alone Facebook page.