About us

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Breast Unit Events on You Tube

What is Breast Unit Events?

Breast Unit Events is a community organisation founded by Kate Butler and Susie Coleman in 2014 to create and run events to raise money for the Worcestershire Breast Unit.  

The original Worcestershire Breast Unit Campaign (started in 2009) sought to create a dedicated unit at Worcester Royal Hospital which would be a 'one stop shop' for all breast related issues for the women and men of Worcestershire.  In our county, over 600 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed every year which is higher than the national average, and many more women (1 in 3) will see a breast specialist at some point during their life.  Due to the amazing fundraising efforts of the people of Worcestershire, that dream became a reality in February 2016 as the doors of the Worcestershire Breast Unit opened to patients for the first time. However, fundraising is still ongoing to now provide state of the art equipment and services above and beyond what the NHS can provide.

As both sufferers of breast cancer, and as Patrons of the original Campaign, we try and raise as much money as we can in our spare time. We’ve both raised thousands of pounds since the Campaign was launched through various events and endeavours.   However, in 2014 we decided to create a small community organisation to provide some focus for our fundraising.  The idea was to produce a number of events, with the help of our friends, to continue our fundraising efforts and so ‘Breast Unit Events’ was born.  

We are not a company, we are not professional fundraisers, and we are not the Worcestershire Breast Unit charity, but we are two women trying to make a difference for the people of Worcestershire.  All of the money raised at our events goes to the Unit. We are not paid for the work that we do, we simply run Breast Unit Events in our spare time.

If you have any queries or would like to know more about any events, please get in touch, it would be great to hear from you.

Who are we?

Co-founders of Breast Unit Events, Kate Butler and Susie Coleman are two Worcester-based friends brought together through breast cancer.  When Susie was diagnosed in 2004 she didn't want other young sufferers of breast cancer to go through the journey alone.  As most women diagnosed with breast cancer are over 50, many of the support and self help groups are aimed at older women, but when you are under 40 it's difficult to know who to turn to.  Thankfully Kate and Susie share the same breast consultant surgeon (our life saver) and when Kate was diagnosed in 2008, he put her in touch with Susie at Susie's request.

As they say, the rest is history....from then on, a strong friendship grew and we’ve been there to support each other through thick and thin ever since.

Our fundraising so far

We are absolutely passionate about raising money for the Unit and had already donated nearly £40,000 through various endeavours prior to establishing Breast Unit Events.  

These included: 

  • Creating and posing for a ‘calendar girls’-style calendar alongside 11 other extraordinary Worcestershire women
  • Working with a large supermarket chain to design and produce special edition Jute pink Campaign shopping bags which were sold in Worcestershire branches  
  • A sponsored walk across the width of England (210 miles in two weeks)  
  • Tea and cakes morning with tombola, table sale and lots of homemade cakes 

We have also contributed to focus groups regarding what was needed in the Unit to help everyone’s breast-related journey more comfortable in what is always a very difficult time.

Our cancer stories....

Susie…. was diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer in December 2004 at just 26 years old.  No-one expects to be told at that age they have breast cancer when the majority of those diagnosed are over 50.  I then started the rollercoaster of treatment which included surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, Herceptin and hormone tablets.  

During chemotherapy I was planning my wedding to Chris and we got married in 2005 - it was something positive to focus on in very dark times.  Since then, I have been a mentor for other young breast cancer sufferers, including Kate.  

After being told I may never have children due to all my cancer treatment, Chris and I were gifted with a miracle of a little boy, Lucas, who was born in June 2013. He is our pride and joy.  

Katewas diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer aged 32 in September 2008, only five months after moving back to my home town of Worcester, from ten fun-filled years in London.  I underwent a similar journey to Susie with surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and five years of hormone tablets, finishing my initial treatment in March 2014. 

I actually found losing my hair quite liberating, although now it’s back I’ve promised to never moan about a ‘bad hair day’ again.

Through my cancer treatment I relied on the love and support of my now husband, Tim, and my wonderful family.  I took hope from seeing my beautiful niece, Scarlett, blossom. She was only 18 months old when I was diagnosed and I felt like she gave me something to live for as I wanted to see her grow up. 

Sadly in December 2016, after eight years, I received the devastating news that my cancer had returned, and has spread to my bones and liver, rendering it incurable.  I continue to try and live as much as I can with whatever time I may have left.  I write a blog to chart my cancer rollercoaster - you can read it here: https://secretlifeofa40yearold.blogspot.com/

Both of us feel so very fortunate to have each other, and our many other friends and family, and your support.