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Gerald's Journey

At just 55 years old, everything changed for outgoing and active fisher and diver Gerald.

In 2019, a routine check-up revealed the devastating news – prostate cancer. 

Every year, more than 4,000 New Zealand men receive the devastating diagnosis of prostate cancer, making it the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among men in the country.

We provide multifaceted support to people affected by cancer – transport, accommodation, and one-on-one appointments with cancer support nurses and counsellors. Donate today to ensure these valuable services are here for anyone who needs them. 

As Gerald underwent treatments, the side effects took their toll. Weight changes are common when undergoing treatment for cancer, and due to his hormone therapy, Gerald experienced rapid weight gain.  

I was 105kg when diagnosed with cancer, and then went to 140kgs after the downhill spiral. The cancer caused me to lose my balance and I often fell over when I walked,said Gerald.

Unable to fit into his wetsuit and wanting to return to the activities he once loved, Gerald joined a gym and began to lose weight. He lost the 35kg he’d gained, and an additional 5kgs.

Gerald’s friends and whānau supported him through his cancer journey, but many others in his situation turn to support groups and other peer support networks. We’re here to connect people to the support they need.  

Gerald joined the PALS Prostate Cancer Support Group, where he met other men with prostate cancer in the community.  

Due to delays in treatment, Gerald’s cancer has spread to other areas and Gerald is more passionate than ever about urging men to get checked regularly. If found and treated early, prostate cancer is often highly curable.  

“I think the main thing about prostate cancer for men is not to be afraid to get checked. It’s so easy – just have the blood test done. It’s so easy to do, and you’re better off finding out that there’s something wrong than finding out when it’s too late.” 

Photograph of Gerald posing in front of a tree. He is smilin

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