By Rebecca Simpson

It has always been a great honour to be part of such an intrinsically fantastic community here in the western Algarve. It’s true to say that many of us still underestimate just how mankind can create magic especially in the darkest of hours. 

In December 2021, Catherine was diagnosed with stage 4 peritoneal, liver and lung cancer. As a 32-year-old, mother, wife, sister, daughter and friend this news has been devastating. Many people within our community expressed their desire to help and support both Catherine, Dan and their two beautiful daughters, Sofia aged five and Serena aged one. 

Adam and Stacey Rich had the wonderful idea of setting up a crowdfunding page, the funds of which could give more treatment options for Catherine, assist the family during this challenging time (neither Dan nor Catherine are able to work at present), help with transportation costs for hospital appointments, and pay for alternative treatments to complement chemotherapy and support both Sofia and Serena. 

The response to this crowdfunding has simply been astounding and somewhat overwhelming. In less than 24 hours, the funds raised exceeded 40,000 euros, more than twice the anticipated target. The money kept pouring in from all over the world and is still very much active. Burgau Sports Centre has been and always will be a very special place which has supported many people over the years. It is now time that as a community we support Catherine and Dan through this difficult time. The amount raised in such a short space of time is an amazing testament to such a wonderful family. 

Not only is Catherine the most unbelievable wife, mother, daughter and sister, she is also the most supportive, hilarious and incredible friend you could ever wish for. Through tough times and great times, Catherine will always be by your side. We have recently started calling her ‘Catherine the Brave’ because she really is. 

The idea of the crowdfunding is to continue to support the family through this time. With organised events and to keep the fundraising very much going. A huge thank you to Adam and Stacey Rich for all their help and support with this inspirational project. 

On behalf of Catherine, Dan, Sofia, Serena and the Burgau Sports Centre family we cannot thank you enough for this overwhelming gesture of total kindness, love and support.