A family has taken to the GoFundMe platform to raise money for the treatment of their four-year-old son who has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
A worried family have come out to beg kind spirited Nigerians for financial assistance to help their four-year-old son to live.
According to the worried parents, Donatus and Elizabeth Amaechi, the young child, Gerald, developed complications three days after birth but due to a Rh incompatibility reaction between his blood and his mother's blood at birth, he developed severe jaundice.
Gerald was later diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a result of jaundice he had at birth which later led to cerebral palsy.
The parents who have taken their plight to GoFundMe, a crowdfunding platform that allows people to raise money for challenging circumstances like accidents and illnesses, narrated how Gerald's problems started and begged for assistance to raise money for an urgent surgery.
This is what they posted on the platform:
"This is Gerald. He was born as a normal child in October 2013. Three days after his birth, the complications set in.
It was an Rh incompatibility reaction between his blood and his mother's blood at birth that led to severe jaundice with bilirubin levels rising to 36% in 24 hours.
A blood exchange transfusion was carried out on him when he was 5 days old. When he was around six-months-old, it became obvious that something was wrong. His development was significantly delayed.
He was very 'floppy' due to low muscle tone and as he grew, it was obvious he was having delayed milestones.
Several tests confirmed that a part of his brain was affected by high level of bilirubin that slipped in when he had jaundice at birth and he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
He was later also diagnosed with hard hearing. He has Severe to Profound Sensorineural Hearing Loss [SNHL].
The hearing test results indicate that he can only hear less than 20 percent of what is optimal for him and this is the reason he has not been able to achieve meaningful speech at four years old.
Gerald has been receiving physical, and occupational therapy since he was 9 months old. He would attend physiotherapy 2 hours a day, twice a week. These sessions helped him to be able to roll over, sit down and craw as a baby.
Today he is four years old but he is yet to stand on his feet and walk. He also cannot hear nor talk.
In these past 3 years of therapy, Gerald has progressed significantly, but more has to be done to rescue him and make him have a better life.
Because he has symptoms of the palsy, it delays certain parts of his brain that have to do with communication as well as physical skills such as standing upright, walking and even jumping.
Gerald cannot talk for now because he has hard hearing and he cannot communicate with us, so it's difficult to understand if there is something wrong, if he is in pain or if he needs anything.
His major mode of communication if something is wrong is by crying. We got him a hearing aid but it did not help because the hearing loss is severe.
The only treatment that can help him right now is to have the Bilateral Cochlear Implant inserted to enable him to hear and subsequently achieve speech.
The cost of the operation is N11 million [about 31,000 US Dollars]. But this not all. In order to show improvement in his motor skills to enable him to walk, Gerald would also need Stem Cell Therapy Treatment.
It's a 9-day Advanced Stem Cell Therapy for cerebral palsy patients in India. He will participate in a life-changing process where his own stem cells are collected, then processed to be re in-fused to his spine to correct the damages that occurred due to high levels of bilirubin at birth.
The cost of his stem cell therapy is put at $30,000 in India. This brings the total amount needed for Gerald to be okay and live a normal life to $61,000.
This entire cost is too huge for me and my immediate and extended family to raise. We would appreciate every bit you can give as your little drops will make an ocean for my little boy Gerald.
Any money raised from this GoFundMe campaign will support;
1. The Bilateral Cochlear Implant
2. The stem cell therapy procedure
3. The hotel accommodations and meals [I will need two caretakers for the duration of the process to take care of Gerald]
4, Travel to and from India for the implant surgery and therapy process
5. Rehabilitation Therapy
6. Nursing care
7. Specialty consultation
It is our strong desire to begin the treatment sometime in January. So, this fundraising campaign is an urgent request for your help.
I have done my best to provide the treatment that Gerald needs to fight this problem. I have accessed money from my savings, sold property, and borrowed from my family members.
Unfortunately, I don’t have enough. I must ask for help. Today, I am asking you to help me so that my son Gerald will get this life changing cochlear-implant and stem cell therapy treatment.
I will be forever grateful for every Naira or Dollar raised through this campaign. I will also be grateful for how a community come together to help my boy, Gerald.
If you are unable to help financially, I understand. I would ask that you consider sharing this GoFundMe campaign with others in your circle that may have the resources to help us. I know together we can do this.
These are the account details for people resident in Nigeria:
Bank Name: - Guaranty Trust Bank
Account Name: - Donatus Amaechi
Account Number: - 001-2997-764
For further correspondence, please, these are our phone numbers:
Donatus Amaechi [Father]: +2348036497241
Elizabeth Amaechi [Mother]: +2348038490844
Thank you for taking a moment to read about Gerald, sharing his story and helping us hit our goal!
Donatus, Elizabeth, Devine, Elsie and Richard
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