Bottom Lines June 2020

Welcome to our Awareness Month edition- Every day, on average, 8 Kiwis will be diagnosed with bowel cancer, and 3 people will die from it.

June is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, a Bowel Cancer NZ initiative, raising awareness of a cancer that kills more than breast and prostate cancer combined. And it’s the reason we hold our annual MOVE YOUR BUTT challenge in June – the more people we can get moving, the more awareness there will be of bowel cancer.

New medical advisor joins our charity – Dr Dragan Damianovich (MD, FRACP) is a medical oncologist and gastrointestinal cancer specialist who consults at both Auckland Hospital and Auckland Oncology. He’s deeply passionate about getting funding for bowel cancer treatments, which is why he’s joined Bowel Cancer NZ in an advocacy role.

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COVID-19 Update Week 3

Happy lockdown Easter! It’s certainly going to be an unusual one for us all, so we want to remind you that while you may be isolated, you’re not alone. Our online support group and nurse support service are here for you.

Are you or someone you love, undergoing treatment for bowel cancer? Countdown is providing priority assistance for online shopping, to ensure the customers who need it most have access to their online delivery services at this time. This applies to those going through cancer treatment.

Many of us have more time on our hands while we’re under lockdown so why not check out our new recipe section? Our nutrition expert and ambassador Claire Turnbull has curated them, and most are her recipes. Trust us; they’re as tasty as they look!

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COVID-19 Update Week 2

As we ready ourselves to enter week 2 of the Covid-19 lockdown, feeling supported and connected couldn’t be more important.

Please remember, you may be isolated but you’re not alone. Our online support group and nurse support service are here for you – to find out more about these services please go to ‘Finding Support’ on our website.

Keeping active can help improve our mental wellbeing as we all adjust to staying home for 4 weeks. Exercising also reduces your risk of developing bowel cancer so it’s a win-win for both your mental and physical wellbeing.

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COVID-19 Update Week 1

As we head into the the first day of New Zealand’s level 4 lockdown we would like to reassure you that we’re here to help and support our bowel cancer community and together, we will get through this.

Our small team will continue to work from home and we are committed to fully supporting our patients and whanāu during this quarantine period. Our online support group and nurse support service are here for you.

Patients on bowel cancer treatment should stay home as much as they can, however if scheduled for cancer treatment, you should go in for it unless advised otherwise by your oncologist.

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Bottom Lines March 2020

Welcome to the first edition of our quarterly E-Newsletter for 2020. This year is the 10th anniversary of our charity, which was formed out of immense need by a group of bowel cancer survivors & whānau who joined forces with industry experts.

To launch our Call to Action 2025 document we shared Esther and Keith’s stories with the media to send a strong message to the government that it is turning its back on hundreds of New Zealanders in their fifties, condemning many to an unnecessarily early grave.
As a charity we know how important it is for patients and whānau to be at the centre of the conversation around what is desperately needed for better cancer care in NZ. So we were proud to represent the voices of bowel cancer patients and their whānau at the recent Cancer Agency Hui.
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Bottom Lines December 2019

We are excited to announce the release of our newest patient support resource! The ‘Living Beyond Bowel Cancer’ booklet is for those that have finished their bowel cancer treatment and are looking for advice around the issues that matter most.

One of the most important areas on our website, the ‘About Bowel Cancer’ section, has been given an awesome new re-design. It is now much easier to find the information you need and is divided into three main areas; What is Bowel Cancer, Managing Risk and Treatment options.

Also covered in this newsletter was that we are pleased to see the bowel screening programme finally rolled out to half of New Zealand’s 20 District Health Boards. However, the charity is critical of how long it has taken, and how long it will continue to take for the remaining half of New Zealand to get access to life-saving bowel screening.

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Bottom Lines September 2019

On the 1st of September we welcomed the announcement by the Government of a national cancer agency and a funding boost for Pharmac. Our general manager Rebekah Heal said, “We want to see a cancer agency empowered to make change happen and to deliver for bowel cancer patients. Currently we are seeing a health system struggling to deliver consistent care nationwide, leading to a postcode lottery in where you live affects the timeliness of diagnosis and the quality of the bowel cancer care you receive. This has to change.”

In this newsletter we also announced the launch of our Nurse Support service available by email 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our Nurse Support is here to help to explain terminology or concepts, answer questions about treatments and their effects and provide support, information and contacts for other services.

We are also thrilled to confirm that television personalities Jenny-May Clarkson, Nigel Latta and Claire Turnbull have agreed to come onboard as ambassadors for our charity, after their stint earlier in the year supporting our Move your Butt campaign!

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Bottom Lines July 2019

As we reflect back on our June awareness month in this newsletter, we are just so thankful to all the support that was shown to us, by so many people around New Zealand. Obviously our Movers from our first ever Move your Butt challenge but also many others!

Our team enjoyed being at Fieldays in the Health Hub with our inflatable colon, helping raise awareness and educating people about the signs and symptoms of bowel cancer this June. We were also proud to support Blair Vining, who is a terminal bowel cancer patient, with his petition to get better cancer care for all New Zealanders through the establishment of a national cancer agency.

Look out for our new August awareness campaign Bowel Cancer Can Affect Us All coming to posters, digital billboards and bus backs near you. It is a continuation of our Never Too Young campaign but broadened this year to show the affect bowel cancer has on the whole family.

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Bottom Lines June 2019

Please enjoy the Awareness Month edition of our quarterly E-Newsletter. Bowel Cancer New Zealand is proud to announce that our Service Directory is now live on our website. This has been a big project for our small charity and one we know will help many New Zealanders and their families affected by bowel cancer.

This June we have launched Move your Butt for bowel cancer awareness month. Our new campaign encourages all New Zealanders to get off their butts and challenge themselves to move more, as exercising and eating well are proven to help beat bowel cancer.

We feel very fortunate to have One News sports commentator Jenny-May Clarkson and Claire Turnbull, nutritionist from Mission Nutrition and Healthy Food Guide, come on-board as our Move your Butt ambassadors.

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Bottom Lines March 2019

Welcome to the first 2019 edition of the quarterly E-Newsletter for Bowel Cancer New Zealand. We’re pleased to announce our website has undergone an exciting facelift with a fresh, new look!

Research first for bowel cancer in NZ – Bowel Cancer New Zealand was proud to fund – ‘New Zealanders’ experiences and pathways to a diagnosis of bowel cancer: a cross-sectional descriptive study of a younger cohort’. It is the first study to present bowel cancer patients’ perspectives and experiences of the pathways to diagnosis in New Zealand and as a charity we felt research was needed in this area.

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Bottom Lines December 2018

Merry Christmas and welcome to December’s edition of the bi-monthly E-Newsletter.

Ever wondered how you can make a difference for the 1 in 6 New Zealanders affected by bowel cancer?  How about helping to save lives and improve the health and wellbeing of people living with bowel cancer by giving a small donation this Christmas. Your kind donation will enable us to continue our awareness raising and education campaigns to stop people dying of bowel cancer.

Decembeard is back for it’s fifth year, sign up today to grow a beard this December and get your mates to back you, because we need your help to beat bowel cancer.

Andrew had always been pretty healthy and when he turned 45, he thought he’d better go and get a warrant of fitness. Andrew mentioned to his GP that he had one instance of passing a small amount of blood and his GP sent him for a colonoscopy.  10 days later he had his colonoscopy to find that he a a 5cm tumour low down in his bowel.

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Bottom Lines October 2018

Anita’s story with bowel cancer started when her Nana died from bowel cancer when she was a young girl. Anita’s mum was also diagnosed with bowel cancer when she was 12, thankfully her mum survived and has been cancer free ever since. Due to other history within Anita’s family, they were encouraged by the Familial GI Cancer Service team to get tested for the Lynch Syndrome MSH2 gene. As Anita was only 15, her mum fought for her to be tested at the same time as Anita’s older brother. She then found out that she was a carrier.

We update you with the National Bowel Screening program, with Hawkes Bay DHB joining the screening program this month.

We proudly introduce a new partner Plumbing World and Metrix and our new medical advisor.


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Karen's Story

Bottom Lines August 2018

In February 2015 Karen was at the doctors with her daughter, on the way out, literally half way out the door, she mentioned that she had been suffering from quite (in reality very severe – think take your breath away) lower abdominal cramps.  Karen assumed they were all part of the wonderful menopause process. Karen soon found out that I had stage 4 bowel cancer that had metastasised to my liver and lung.

Meat Free week is back again this from the 24th – 30th of September.  Find out how you can sign up and take up the meat free week challenge, all while raising funds and awareness for bowel cancer.

We wrap up a successful Never Too Young campaign, and also acknowledge people who have been fundraising and raising awareness for Bowel Cancer New Zealand around the country.


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Bottom Lines June 2018

It is June Awareness Month, and we need your help to raise public awareness of a disease that claims the lives of more than 100 New Zealanders each month, as well as raising much needed funds to continue our vital lifesaving work.

As part of the June Awareness Month,  you may have seen our campaign Never Too Young.  Every year, more than 300 people under 50 are diagnosed with bowel cancer, nearly as many as the national road toll.  Unfortunately, younger patients are often diagnosed when it is too late for effective treatment. The problem? They can be considered too young, too healthy, too fit and remain undiagnosed for months or even years before presenting with advanced bowel cancer.

Also find out about our trek the Great Wall of China to raise funds for Bowel Cancer New Zealand.  The Hike for Health brings together supporters from various New Zealand and Australian health  organisations for an adventure trek to the Great Wall of China.

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Bottom Lines April 2018

The Southern DHB prepares to launch National Bowel Screening Program, so read all the updates you need if you live in that district.

We also have our Patient Story on John Glue, who at 67 was diagnosed with bowel cancer after the only symptom he had was some intermittent blood in his stools.  Thankfully his GP acted and arranged for a colonoscopy.

Fiona and Natalie have been walking the Central Otago Rail Trail over Easter time, after loosing their close friend Lisa in 2015 at aged only 30. So far they have raised over $5,200.00

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Bottom Lines February 2018

#Nevertooyoung  – Patient Story, Britt Chambers

Britt Chambers is 31 and found out in the middle of December 2017 that she has stage 4 bowel cancer. Unfortunately because of the length of time it has been left to grow it as spread to her lungs and is in lymph nodes around the body.

We also thank those who took part in Decembeard 2017 where we raised over $16,000!

There is still time totake part of our Patients Survey, As you will know, bowel cancer has a huge impact on many New Zealanders and their families. But until now, some key information has been missing that could make a difference for patients in the future – that is, information about the experiences of patients and their whānau/families, and their different pathways to a bowel cancer diagnosis.

The Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon is on again on the 12th of May 2018 and there are still some charity entries available to run in this iconic 1/2 Marathon.


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Bottom Lines December 2017

Grow a Beard, Raise Funds, and help us Beat Bowel Cancer –  Decembeard® is back for it’s fourth year.

Bowel Cancer is New Zealand’s second biggest cancer killer and around 1 in 20 New Zealand men will develop the disease in their lifetime. That’s why we’ve dedicated the month of December to raising much needed funds and awareness for bowel cancer in men. So time to ditch the razor, and grow some facial hair for the month of December.

We also have Stefan Corbett’s story, our Ambassador for the Wellington region  who was diagnosed with stage 3 bowel cancer at 47 years old. The only symptoms he had was sporadic blood showing up in his poop and some constipation and cramps. Nothing really – or so he thought.

We invite you to take part of our Patients Survey, As you will know, bowel cancer has a huge impact on many New Zealanders and their families. But until now, some key information has been missing that could make a difference for patients in the future – that is, information about the experiences of patients and their whānau/families, and their different pathways to a bowel cancer diagnosis.


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Bottom Lines September 2017

Are you up for the challenge of going one week without meat to support New Zealanders affected by bowel cancer? We’ve already had a number of wonderful individuals join our Meat Free Week team and begin raising much-needed funds for the approximately 3,000 Kiwis diagnosed with bowel cancer each year.

Need a challenge this spring?  Join us in Auckland’s biggest, most iconic, colourful and cultural running celebration by becoming part of Team Bowel Cancer at this year’s ASB Auckland Marathon!

We also have Jewel Brown’s story who at the age of 30 was diagnosed with Stage 3 Bowel Cancer. Jewel’s doctors diagnosed her with IBS and she was prescribed with diarrhoea medication and told to go on a fodmap diet.

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Bottom Lines June 2017

June is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month.

Auction off one thing you no longer need on Trade Me and help New Zealand get rid of its highest cancer statistic.

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer deaths in the world. But if it’s caught early, in 75% of cases, it can be cured. Every successful bowel cancer charity auction you create will help fund early symptom education and awareness.  #BEATBOWELCANCER.

We also have Peter’s story and his decision to ask for his doctor to get tested for Bowel Cancer.  This resulted in Peter finding out that he had Bowel Cancer with no real symptoms.

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Bottom Lines April 2017

We are very excited to announce the launch of our brand new website!  We hope you will find the new website easier to navigate around, find the information that you need as well answering any questions you may have.  A big thank you to Digital Art’s Network for generously donating their time in building this fabulous new website for us!

Also not long now until the Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon on the 13th of May! So far we have fundraised nearly $21,000 with a goal of reaching $50,000 and have 49 people currently fundraising for us through the everydayhero website.

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Bottom Lines December 2014

Visit our new microsite to register and get involved. All you need to do is grow a beard (or some bum fluff), and promote your facial hair to raise awareness and funds for New Zealand’s cancer – bowel cancer.  Join the manly ranks growing a beard for Beat Bowel Cancer Aotearoa in Decembeard™!

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Bottom Lines August 2014

This is the second year that Team Running for Ruth has hit the streets of Wellington to run The Armstrong Motors Wellington Half Marathon. Last year it was just me, but this year 16 friends and family of Ruth’s braved the cold winter’s day to run/walk the 10km and half marathon.  Our courageous and gorgeous Ruth passed away in February aged 41, nearly two years after being diagnosed with bowel cancer. 

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Bottom Lines June 2014

To launch our many and varied activities during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month this June Beat Bowel Cancer Aotearoa reported on government progress against Beat Bowel Cancer Aotearoa’s 2015 Call to Action, which set out 10 Key calls we asked to see achieved before 2015.

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