At HelpHOPELive, we have many stories about the lives we’ve touched. We hope you’ll take a moment to read this message from the mother of Deanna, a one-year-old girl who was diagnosed with a rare, life-threatening liver disease.
If you’re a parent, you know that your child’s health and happiness are at the heart of your own well-being. When your child faces a catastrophic illness or injury, it can be devastating for you and your family. I know that, because I lived it.
When Deanna was diagnosed last year, we were told to prepare for an organ transplant—our daughter’s only chance for survival. It was life-changing to realize that our little girl might not see her next birthday. All we could do was hope that a donor organ would become available.
Amid all of our emotional difficulties, we also had to contend with the financial implications of Deanna’s illness. The costs of a transplant are staggering. Many families become overwhelmed by uninsured medical bills and unanticipated expenses.
My husband and I divided time between holding our daughter’s hand at the hospital, working, and trying to maintain a healthy balance for our two sons at home. Meanwhile, the bills kept mounting. Thankfully, we didn’t have to worry because of HelpHOPELive and your generous support. Your contributions helped us pay for hospital bills, lab tests and blood work, long-term medications, follow-up appointments, travel expenses, and more.
On February 27, 2014, our greatest hope was realized when Deanna received the gift of life. I can’t thank you enough, because I know she—and we—didn’t get there alone. It’s because of you that Deanna was able to celebrate her first birthday at home with cake, cupcakes, gifts, and family. She watched her first Fourth of July fireworks. She took her first plane ride to visit family for Thanksgiving. And she recently got to celebrate her daddy’s birthday, giving him the best gift of all: his baby girl smiling and home.
Donors like you have given “first” experiences to more than 1,100 people this year alone. People like:
Abigail, a lung transplant patient who was able to breathe without oxygen for the first time with help from you.
Dave, a spinal cord injury patient who was able to drive again for the first time with your help.
Katie, who received a liver transplant, was able to run a 5K for the first time because of your gift.
Luis, who suffered a traumatic brain injury, was able to take his first college class with your donation.
For too many families, a medical crisis – transplant, catastrophic illness or injury – quickly becomes a financial one. Uninsured expenses such as co-pays, relocation for treatment, medication, home accessibility and rehabilitation eat up savings.
Your generosity is matched by another 22,000 people who have helped our patients concentrate on healing, freeing them from extraordinary financial burden.
There is no shortage of patients coming to HelpHOPELive. Currently more than 123,000 men, women, and children are on the transplant list, and 12,000 new spinal cord injuries occur each year. Each client is different, each has his or her own unique needs, but all of them need help from our generous donors.