2020 has been such a turbulent year that it's safe to say that all of us are feeling its effects to some degree. The uncertainty over our future, fears of catching a deadly virus, worries about our loved ones and rapidly changing circumstances have been our companions for many months. And so much unknown still lies ahead.
These emotions are not unlike experiences that families of children with cancer go through from the moment of diagnosis. It's a heavy burden of emotional, physical and financial turmoil, and to cope with it the families have to mobilize all of their resources and reach out to wide and far communities. Often, in search of appropriate treatment their journey takes them abroad. Rostislav's family had to follow just such a path.
Rostislav is now 3 years old. He's been growing up healthy and happy and enjoyed going to daycare. A month ago he suddenly began complaining of stomachaches, and his parents took him to see a doctor. A large abdominal tumor was discovered by Rostislav’s local doctors in the city of Khmelnitskyi, in western Ukraine, and he was referred for additional evaluation in Kyiv. There Rostislav was diagnosed with aggressive childhood cancer, neuroblastoma. Unfortunately, the primary tumor metastasized to Rostislav’s bone marrow by that time. Neuroblastoma’s treatment is highly complex and challenging and requires several approaches that have to precisely timed – surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and immunotherapy. Immunotherapy, which cuts the risk of relapse by half, is only available abroad, and Rostislav’s parents took him to Spain to access this treatment. While they were able to raise money for initial deposit, they will need to raise much more to be able to complete treatment.
Our project helps to support families like Rostislav's. We believe that every child regardless of their place of birth deserves access to the best care available for cancer. We search the world for the proper opportunities or support patients that have already found treatment on their own but need financial aid. Thank you so much for allowing us to continue our work!
We are truly grateful for your help! Hope the upcoming holiday season will bring you joy and happiness.