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Posts by jacqueline
Could you climb Mount Kilimanjaro? Would you sacrifice you time, your energy and your money to climb for good?
This story features a good friend, Kay Walten. She is on her way to Africa next week to help change the world one very steep step at a time. Please consider supporting Kay on her plight to help women and children in Africa as climbs Mount Kilimanjaro. Watch the video and just click on this link on Go Fund Me . Help Kay reach her goal before she begins her climb September 29th.
Be inspired. Be generous. Give.
This story speaks for itself. It has been written by a husband in desperate need to help his wife. It is your chance to possibly save a life and if not Erica’s than someone that is in desperate need of a bone marrow transplant. Please consider donating today. Please post this on your Facebook page, tweet it or create your own post to spread this urgent call for help across the globe. Time is of the essence. I have added link at the bottom of places all over the world that you can give a sample to. It’s easy and urgent. Please donate today.
Erica, I love you my dear friend and my families prayers are with you every day.
Urgent Plea for Bone Marrow Donors to Help My Amazing Wife and Super-Mama – Erica
This is our urgent plea to you and to everyone that you know to help my amazing wife/our boys’ super-mama Erica find a suitable bone marrow transplant donor to help to save her life and to get her back home to our two young boys (ages 2 and 5). The picture is a recent shot of Erica in hospital.
On the afternoon of June 6, 2012 we were told that Erica had acute mylogenous leukemia (AML). She was immediately admitted to the Leukemia/BMT ward at Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) and a first round of chemo was started on June 8th. The first round lasted 7 days.
The intent of chemotherapy for AML (an acute form of blood cancer) is to wipe out all of the bad (leukemic) as well as the good cells in Erica’s bone marrow (where blood cells are formed and grow). What the doctors are looking for after the chemo treatment is for the bone marrow to be entirely clear of all cells, enabling Erica’s healthy cells to start growing again without the bad leukemic cells (essentially pressing a bone marrow ”reset” button). When the bone marrow is clear after chemo and the recovery period, the doctors call it ”remission”.
On June 21st, Erica had a bone marrow biopsy to determine if the 1st round of chemo had done its job. Instead of a clear marrow, what showed was about 10% “immature” cells. The concern of her doctors was that these were bad leukemic cells that were not destroyed by the chemo.
On June 28th, Erica had another bone marrow biopsy. We received the results the next day, on Friday, June 29th. These results showed clearly that the 1st round of chemo did not do its job. As of June 28th, the bad leukemic cells were estimated at 60% to 70% of her marrow. When this all started at the beginning of June, before any chemo treatments, her bad cells were estimated at 26%.
What does this mean? For starters, we were told that this result means that she is in the “high risk” designation for AML. Very high doses of different, harsher chemo drugs and a bone marrow transplant (BMT) are the urgent course of treatment.
They started what they call ”salvage” chemo on Saturday morning (June 30th). This aggressive round of chemo lasts 6 days, with a 4 to 6 week estimated ”recovery” period afterwards. We were also told that if this chemo does not do its job and put Erica’s leukemia into remission that there are no other courses of treatment for Erica at VGH. Assuming this harsher chemo does its job, Erica needs a BMT right away. The BMT has to occur shortly after this round of chemo, once remission is indicated (ie that the marrow is clear of the bad leukemic cells).
We need your urgent assistance with the bone marrow.
We need to find Erica as close a match as possible for her BMT from an un-related donor. There are international bone marrow donor registries that are being searched right now. As of Friday, the doctor indicated that a match had not been found yet. Further, if a match is found somewhere in the world, that donor has to confirm their consent.
Our window of time is very short to find a suitable, willing donor if the chemo does its job and the marrow is clear.
If you, or someone you know, agree to donate, and get on the donor registry very quickly, you may be able to assist Erica.
Please encourage friends, colleagues and family to sign up to the registry to donate their stem cells/bone marrow if they are able.
Please circulate and post this information and our plea everywhere you can.
For those of you in Canada, below is a link to the “One Match” bone marrow registry run by Canadian Blood Services (CBS). Information about the registry and forms to complete are on this site Canadian Blood Services. For those of you not in Canada please search to find the donor opportunities in your country of origin.
There is a process to follow. Once you sign up online, CBS contacts you in 8-10 business days and sends you a swab kit – you can contact your local CBS office to see if you can shorten this timeline and/or have the swab done at their location. Time is of the essence.
Also, if you, and/or anyone you know, are able to donate blood and/or platelets – this is also very important. Erica had a number of transfusions of platelets and haemoglobins in her first round of chemo and we anticipate there will be many more transfusions during this next chemo treatment. You never realize how important donating blood and platelets really is until you are receiving them.
Thank you for your thoughts, prayers, strength and support.
Thank you for spreading the word and circulating our plea.
Thank you for helping to bring Erica home.
Faith, Hope and Love
“Go Fighters Go”
(This is what our boys say to their mama to help her get her healthy “fighter” cells working again in her body)
United States: http://marrow.org/Join/
New Zealand: http://www.nzblood.co.nz/
My favourite day of the year is almost here: World Give Day – May 4th, 2012. After completing my own personal giving journey for 365days I had the honour of meeting people from all over the world that are doing so much to give back in their own way. I was asked by the team at World Give Day to write a story how small gift can create a big impact. It happens to be the 365give philosophy. You don’t have to be a Bill Gates or Oprah Winfrey and give billions of dollars away in your lifetime but one small gift / give and make a huge impact.
My World Give Day story is based on one such women that saved one little beings life in Romania while there on business.
Meet my sister Karen Somers – animal rescuer extrodinaire and Stella – the life she saved from Romania. You will see how her one small gift has brought so much joy to a family and will now make a great impact on hundreds of dogs lives.
Little Stella is one of over 2 million street dogs that wander throughout Romania.
This one-month-old pup crossed our paths on a movie location outside Bucharest. At the end of a long, cold night shoot, during a rain storm, this sickly puppy was the last dog left, too weak to find shelter. We were in a foreign country and didn’t know what to do.
Stella’s experience is a common one in Romania, a country that struggles to provide for its impoverished citizens on every level. Night after night, thousands of dogs go hungry, left to fend for themselves in temperatures that will eventually freeze many of them to death. The problem is not only a moral one, it also comes down to math. Every unsterilized female dog and her offspring in their lifetime and that of their puppies can produce over 67,000 dogs. Spay and neuter programs, education and shelter are in short supply to deal with this overwhelming dilemma. So USA-based 501(c)(3) non-profit, Romania Animal Rescue (RAR), was formed by American animal activist, Nancy Janes, to help where help was so sorely needed. Nancy and her team have created an effective free spay and neuter program in Romania utilizing highly skilled local veterinarians. They go town to town, doing up to 300 operations in a weekend. Their efforts are making headway on a grassroots level, slowly transforming the way a generation will help “man’s best friend”.
Stella and I were lucky that night.
She was wrapped up in a blanket and smuggled into my Romanian hotel room. After fostering with a local vet, she got her shots and flew home (20 hours on my lap) with me to California last November. Stella is an incredible dog. She wakes up with joy and goes to sleep in peace. She brings laughter and sunshine where ever she goes. Stella inspired me to help her family left in Romania.
In Stella’s name we are raising $10,000 to help Romania Animal Rescue’s spay/neuter program.
You and your dollars will make a huge difference to a homeless dog in Romania. Please donate what you can afford today to the Stella Fund.
“This post is part of a blog series inspired by World Give Day and hosted by GiveForward. To find other posts in this series please visit www.worldgiveday.com or follow us on twitter @worldgiveday.”