MEET KATE CUSMANO
10 AUGUST 2022
Kate’s taking on the half marathon at the 2022 MS Melbourne Run + Ride Festival. She’s already raised an incredible $2,676 and plans to make it an annual event on her calendar to run to Fight MS, raising vital funds and awareness while the search for a cure continues.
Her team, Kate’s Crew, will be donning team tshirts and celebrating with an after party at Kate’s house to celebrate their achievements – her 30 team mates are running 5km, 10km and 21.1km, with some team members never attempting these distances before.
“It’s nice to turn my MS into something positive – a sense of community and challenge. It’s great to feel empowered and do something together,” Kate says.
Kate was diagnosed with MS in December 2019.
“I had pins and needles and couldn’t feel my hands. I was lucky I was diagnosed within a month.”
Now she suffers sensory problems, tingling and severe fatigue.
“I’m focused on making sure it doesn’t rule my life.”
“I might have MS, but I can still do things. I run because I can. I don’t know what the next 5, 10 and 20 years will bring me physically with the MS. Taking on a half marathon isn’t a small feat.”
Kate got in touch with Plus Connect when she was first diagnosed.
“I’m lucky knowing there’s a service dedicated to support me. During my first year since diagnosis, they called me to check in that I was doing ok.
“It’s nice knowing that if I have questions it’s literally a phone call or email and someone can direct me. They are experts in MS.”
“The services for MS I use, and the medication I’m on didn’t exist 6 years ago – that’s why raising money for services and research is so important. We’ve got to keep working toward a cure.”
Kate reaches out on social media to fundraise and also got support from her workplace.
“It’s been extremely overwhelming the support.”
Her employer, a local swim school, is running a raffle with over 400 tickets sold so far.
They emailed all their customers and have the raffle prize on display at the main reception. Her employer has been sharing Kate’s story to raise awareness while fundraising.
“They’ve been very generous letting me use their platform.”
Fundraising helps make possible a suite of services that minimise the impact of living with multiple sclerosis, while the search for a cure continues. Learn more about the difference you make by running or riding in the MS Melbourne Run + Ride Festival.