Cooking Icon Fatima Sydow Overwhelmed as R725,000 Pours in for Her Cancer Fight

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Celebrity chef, cookbook author, and TV show host, Fatima Sydow (49) from Lansdowne, Cape Town, has bravely shared her cancer journey with her followers since her diagnosis with Soft Tissue Sarcoma in December 2020.

This journey has tested her strength and resilience, leading her through a challenging array of treatments and surgeries, each taking a toll on her physical and emotional well-being. Her path has been marked by moments of triumph and despair as she has continuously battled against the odds. 

Crowdfunding on BackaBuddy

On August 18, 2023, realizing that she was unable to work and confronted with the weight of her battle, Fatima reached out to her followers for financial assistance through a crowdfunding campaign on BackaBuddy. 

Fatima with her oncology palliative nurse, Carly Rinquist and Kulthum Mukuddem Ismail, Head of the radiation department at Vincent Palotti.

This moment of vulnerability was met with overwhelming kindness, as more than 1,000 donors came together to raise R725,000 towards her target of R850,000. 

Thanks to the generosity of donors, Fatima can now focus on her treatment without the burden of work or financial worries.

These funds will provide crucial support by covering her fundamental requirements, such as medical treatment, at-home caregiving services, and the purchase of a hospital bed for her forthcoming discharge. Furthermore, they will assist in addressing ongoing day-to-day costs, including specialized dietary needs, weekly transportation to the hospital for treatment, and any other essentials that can significantly improve her overall comfort and quality of life.

The outpouring of support has deeply touched Fatima and her family, underscoring the transformative power of even the smallest acts of kindness and the resilience needed to conquer life’s challenges. 

Fatima, in a heartfelt message posted on her YouTube channel on September 13, expressed her gratitude towards her donors who have contributed on BackaBuddy: 

“The support I’ve received has shown me the humanity of our community and the love we have for each other, our culture, our people, our city, and our country. I am so grateful; you have carried me through this journey more than you realize. You’ve done so much. Thank you; I love you all.” – says Fatima


Fatima recently completed a series of radiation therapy sessions, with a focus on treating the cancer in her frontal lobe, the region associated with one’s personality, and her right forearm, the skilled hand she’s used for years to craft her famous dishes—5 sessions for the brain, and 10 sessions for the arm. 

While she’s currently on a 10-day break, her treatment is ongoing. In the next phase of her journey, she will be managing her condition with oral medication.

Fatima is deeply touched by the support she has received from kind donors

Fatima’s culinary journey began at a young age, and her popularity soared with her Facebook page, “Cape Malay Cooking with Fatima Sydow.” She later self-published her first book, “The Journey of Cape Malay Cooking with Fatima Sydow,” which opened doors to numerous opportunities, including a cooking show called “Kaap, Kerrie, and Koesisters” and additional published works.

Support Fatima’s campaign:

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Create your own Crowdfunding Campaign

South Africa’s leading crowdfunding platform, BackaBuddy has raised over R460 Million in support of various worthy causes from donors from around the world.

If you’re a charity or an individual in need of funds for medical needs, tuition fees or simply want to pay it forward, launch a crowdfunding campaign on BackaBuddy here.

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