Harvesting hope

Kate Callaghan

A few weeks ago Kate Callaghan received the devastating diagnosis of stage four metastatic breast cancer, which has spread to her lymph nodes and liver. Kate was told, effectively —  there isn't anything to be done. She isn’t eligible for surgery, and while chemotherapy or radiation will prolong her life, any treatment from this point is palliative. 

Kate’s tragedy has been a harrowing reminder of just how powerful people can be when we all come together to work collectively towards one goal. The community is striving to do more for this amazing wee family, by providing them with the space to run, play, grow and thrive for years to come. ‘Together 4 Kate 2020’ is a project where the community will be landscaping the family’s new section in Lake Hāwea in February 2020.  

“We know that sometimes it can be hard to give monetary donations so we are putting the call out for any donations of time or resources that you or your business could help with to help us achieve our goal. We are asking for interest on the below donations now so we can start full planning over the next four weeks,” said Amy, a spokesperson for the cause. 

This is a list of what the volunteers need: digger and labour; topsoil, compost, mulch and bark chips; pebbles; natives, flowers and fruit trees; weedmat; timber; lawn seed; edging.  A spokesperson from ‘Together 4 Kate 2020’ spoke on behalf of the rough time frame: “Firstly, it would be digger work to site scrape and then form some berms and terrace some veggie gardens, then we would need volunteer builders and materials to do some retaining of the veggie gardens. The next steps would be to put wooden edging in for the gardens and lawns, here we would need builders and materials, next is the weed mat, topsoil and lawn seed and planting of natives”. 

“In terms of volunteers it all began when I read the givealittle page and decided that although we can give money time is what they really need to get this project completed, so that they can watch their children run on lawn and feed their bodies with organic produce from their gardens. I talked to my husband who agreed we could try to make this happen. I then mentioned it to Kate who was more than grateful for our offer of help,” she continued, ''I then talked to Nic about it who was keen to jump on board as well as Anna Edkins from Kanuka Corner preschool (their gardening and cooking expert). So together we have come up with a plan and are now trying, with your help to make it happen. We have had an elderly couple offer some natives from their nursery, and a few people offer time but we haven't been advertised yet. We are hoping to get time and materials fully donated for this worthy cause.”

Please email together4kate@gmail.com to register any donations of time, the items listed or additional relevant items. The volunteers would be grateful for any support that can be given to help to have a positive impact on Callaghan family's future.


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