This Father Paddled 400KM To Save His Son's Life From Deadly Disease | Milaap

This Father Paddled 400KM To Save His Son's Life From Deadly Disease

5-year-old Vivek was diagnosed with a blood disease when he was just 3 months old. Ever since he has been undergoing blood transfusions every 15 days. It is the only way he can survive. But last year when the pandemic struck and a nationwide lockdown was announced, it became a matter of life and death for this poor boy.

“It had been more 15 days since Vivek’s last transfusion and his condition got very critical. We kept waiting for an ambulance, but it never came.Looking at him, my husband just couldn’t sleep all night. He said if my child dies, I’ll die too and the next morning he just took Vivek with him on his bicycle to the city. It was a 200 km journey, but there was nothing else to do.” - Rekha, mother

I just kept peddling in an effort to save my son’s life

“I couldn’t let my child die in front of my eyes, so I just kept peddling. We carried food from home and when it was finished we made do with whatever we could get along the way. I managed to save my son that time, but it’s a constant battle to keep him alive,” -Dilip

Vivek suffers from Thalassemia Major, a disorder involving lower-than-normal amounts of an oxygen-carrying protein in the blood. It leaves the child fatigued, weak and pale and tends to slow growth. To add to their woes, Vivek has a rare blood group: A -ve. Every 15 days, Dilip and Vivek set out across Jharkhand to find a centre that can meet their requirement since that blood group is usually in short supply at the local Blood Bank.

However, now even those bi-weekly trips won't help. The child’s disease has progressed over the years and, now only a bone marrow transplant can save his life. 

A Poor labourer, he barely manages to keep the family afloat

Dilip is the only breadwinner for his family of 7 members. He is a daily wage labourer and his income is barely enough to keep the family afloat along with Vivek’s transfusion expenses. For the past 5 years, Dilip has been mostly away from home, getting Vivek treated alone in various cities. Whichever city he went to with Vivek, he was forced to find temporary work so that his son's medical expenses could be managed.

“It was very hard to manage everything. There were times when I was asked to leave the site as I had Vivek with me and times when I didn’t earn enough money to send him back home for the interim. It has been a painful journey for the entire family and now it can finally come to end - this transplant can help my child live a normal life...but I can’t afford it.” -Dilip

Vivek is a playful child, who looks at the world with his curious little eyes. But his innocent smile and chirpy self now has a 2-week expiration date. He needs a bone marrow transplant to end this cycle. It will cost his poor father INR 20 lakhs, which is impossible for him to afford.

This family needs your help to end their misery. Your generous contribution can save this child’s life. Click here to donate.
Patient Vivek Kumar is 5 years old, living in Godda, Jharkhand
Being treated in Aster CMI Hospital, Bengaluru, Karnataka

Receiving Bone Marrow Transplant treatment for Thalassemia

Click here to know more about Vivek Kumar