September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month. In the U.S., treatment opportunities for children are endless compared to treatment opportunities for children in other countries. Here in the U.S. we have a social system that will help parents secure care for their critically ill child without bankrupting them. That is not always true in China.
Often times, people will reach out to Red Thread Advocates and say they are not in a position to adopt, but that they are trying to find a way to help a child. RTA would love to tell you about a little girl who needs you now.
In April of this year, a staff member at an absolutely amazing foster care facility in China contacted me about a little girl named Anna in their care who had been diagnosed with Leukemia. She is available for adoption, but that’s not why this staff member was reaching out to me.
Life has dealt so many blows to this sweet girl. Not only does she have Leukemia, but she also had a previously diagnosed visual impairment. Life with a VI in China isn’t easy. Children in the U.S. live with amazing success with diagnoses of blindness. In China, life is harder. Education, gainful employment, they’re all difficult for a blind individual living in China. They’re even more difficult to secure when you have orphan status.
Add to this Anna’s Leukemia diagnosis, and life got a whole lot harder. Bethel China is taking amazing care of Anna. Anna’s diagnosis is complex, and in China there is no socialized medicine. Bethel China is paying for all of Anna’s Leukemia treatment out of their general medical budget. This fund will soon be depleted. Last week, Anna developed complications from her treatment. The update below is from her caregivers.
Two days ago, Anna developed a fever and became unconscious. She has an infection that doctors believe caused bleeding in her brain. Fortunately, it wasn’t that much and she is not in the ICU. They hope her brain function won’t be affected. She is now very heavily medicated, but once the medication wears off we’ll know more.
She has been in the hospital for two days at a cost of $3,000 per day. The doctors are upbeat about her outcome and are very impressed with how well she has responded to chemotherapy thus far. Because she has been so strong through ten rounds of chemo, they expect that she will make a full recovery. Anna will need another 1.5 years of treatment. The doctor is very optimistic about her chances of survival.
We estimate that the total cost for Anna’s continued treatment will be around $45,000 (this includes the rest of her hospital stay and chemo treatments, but does not include unforeseen emergencies that occasionally arise). Yesterday, we were able to raise $3,800 in 24 hours! Thank you so much to everyone who donated! We have also received many donations from individuals in China as well.
Currently, our biggest need is for funding to ensure that Anna gets the best treatment we can give her. To donate, you can visit the Bethel China website.
If you are not in a position to adopt, this is the way you can help. Please consider donating to Bethel China to help with Anna’s ongoing treatment expenses. If you are in a position to adopt, and you want more information about adopting Anna, please contact Tabitha at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is another little girl waiting whose story has been nearly as hard as Anna’s. Holland has a diagnosis of Retinoblastoma. In China, treatment options for this eye-related cancer is often removal of the affected eye.
Holland lost both of her eyes to this diagnosis. Holland’s adoption file was pulled from the Shared List. She is now designated to a specific agency, but any agency can help you view Holland’s file. WACAP will offer a grant to help with Holland’s adoption if a parent chooses to adopt through their China program.
Whether you’re considering adoption or just looking to support a child who needs you, please consider these two little girls during the month of September.