Ankita and Vandana; our Champions
Affordability, accessibility and utilization of the health facilities are directly proportional to the socio-economic status of the family. In India, there is a need to help and psycho-socially support the children suffering from Cancer so that their lives can be saved. It is essential to help them maintain a balance in life and manage the disease condition in holistic manner. Most of the cancers in children are curable. However, many children die due to lack of comprehensive medical care. The social and economic realities prevent a sizeable population from seeking timely treatment and following up on the treatment.
In Mumbai Smiles, the HOPE project and its interventions are designed to address the financial, psycho-social, emotional and diagnostic need of 25 underprivileged children suffering from Cancer, aged 0 to 18 years coming from all over India, admitted at Holy Spirit Hospital, Andheri (East), Mumbai.
This project envisages giving importance to comprehensive and holistic care. It emphasizes on the aspect that is excluded from the medical care in the typical Indian hospital setting.
Among the various activities under this Project, ‘Champion of the month’ is one such activity that recognizes and honours these children who have successfully undergone a surgery or completed the chemotherapy cycle.
This month marked the celebration of consistent fortitude of our beneficiaries, Ankita and Vandana who completed their course of therapy and are determined to stand strong against the adversities of the disease. Ankita, 18 years old, finished her surgery for Brain Tumor and Vandana, 15 years old suffering from Retinoblastoma completed her 8 Chemotherapy cycles and 40 Radiations. Both the champions were given gifts to motivate them to continue their therapy. The hospital staff, nurses, Mumbai Smiles volunteers and other beneficiaries extended their support to both of them. Ankita’s words while she was leaving “I could have never been able to do this without all of you” were filled with immense gratitude and affection towards everybody present there. Vandana was touched by the involvement shown by the other beneficiaries into her treatment and this brought a bright smile on her face.
This effort ensures that the beneficiaries don’t fight the disease alone. A society that supports can make a huge difference just by being there for them. The event was concluded by distributing medical kits to all the beneficiaries.
Written by Mumbai Smiles volunteer Chiranshu Kumar. Thank you!
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