Feature

Samaira Ali, Aged 1, Battles Cancer

She is probably Fiji’s youngest cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy.
20 Nov 2019 19:35
Samaira Ali, Aged 1, Battles Cancer
Little Samaira Ali at the Lautoka Hospital before and after her chemotherapy.

At one year and three months old, Areeba Samaira Ali is perhaps the youngest person in the country to undergo chemotherapy.

Only a month ago, she was diagnosed with blood cancer and four days ago she underwent chemotherapy at the Lautoka Hospital.

Her father, Faiaz Ali, a bus driver, had to leave work so he could focus on his daughter. As young Areeba battles with cancer, her family had to deal with its own fair share of fights including unscrupulous people trying to scam money with the promise of a cure for her.

“I want to take my daughter to India where she can have a bone marrow transplant. Right now, I am using all my time to look after her and raise money for the trip,” Mr Ali said.

“I have been approached by many people offering me a fully paid trip to hospitals in India. And I have realised that most of them are trying to make money.

“There are some people who are trying to take advantage of my little Areeba’s condition.”

Mr Ali said he has to be careful and hopes the Government can offer him some assistance in deciding on the right choice.

So far, Helping Hands Fiji, a non-government organisation that helps with sick children, has been helping Mr Ali to raise funds.

Its co-ordinator Razia Mohammed said funds were being raised through fund drives like lovo packs.

Last week $1750 was raised. The next event is a barbecue.

Last week, little Areeba underwent three sessions of chemotherapy in one day. Following that she has been ill.

Mr Ali and his wife Anaya are worried that Areeba is in constant pain as she does not sleep well and refuses to eat.

“I want my daughter to get better. She is our only child. For now, there has been help from the people at my mosque. They have given us a place to stay,” Mr Ali said.

“I hope to provide the best treatment for my child.”

Areeba is battling cancer. She is a little superhero fighting big battles every day.

The Ali family are hoping that they will able to collect the money needed for their superhero and get the chance to enjoy a normal life.

They are also hopeful of getting the right medical treatment through proper and legal means.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

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