The Sunflower Fund

At 24 years old, fresh out of varsity you have so many opportunities that lie ahead and exciting choices that are ready to be made. For Niki, his bike is sitting in the corner and beginning to rust, his job applications are sitting in a dust pile on the floor and his memories of what it feels like to be ‘normal’ seem to have gotten lost, forever. There is no such thing as hope. There is no such th

ing as positive thinking. Anyone else would have given up by now, but Niki holds his head up high, smiles and says “I am going to make the best of things, while I am still here”.

Niki suffers from a deadly and not so rare disease known as Leukaemia. For those who are not familiar with this form of cancer, it is the result of DNA changes which activate cancer-causing cells or deactivates cancer-suppressing cells. These changes may occur spontaneously and can be influenced by genetic factors. This form of cancer can be treated with Chemo therapy, but unlike all the other types of cancer, it cannot ‘cure’ cancer. The only way to get rid of Leukaemia is to have a bone marrow transplant from an exact match donor, which is 1:100 000. So in short, the chance of survival is extremely low, and very unlikely. This is not a disease you can live with. It is lethal to the most extreme.

The scariest thing about Leukaemia is that it mostly occurs in young people and is difficult to diagnose as symptoms include feeling fluey and tired, amongst others. The only way to stop this disease from killing innocent youth is for every person to have 2 spoons of their blood tested and placed on the international registry so that young people suffering from this nightmare have the opportunity to live again, everyone deserves a chance at life.

Today Niki is heading to Cape Town to ride the Argus for the 10th time in a row. Even though he hasn’t been able to stay fit and in practice as his chemo sessions have made him too weak, he wants to take part as he remembers that he needs to live every moment like its the last, because he hasn’t found a donor match so literally every moment is his last.

Don’t wait for this silent murderer to affect someone you know to make you want to test your blood.  Visit www.sunflowerfund.org.za and follow the simple and pain free steps. You could save a precious life, you could be a hero.

This entry was posted in Life.

2 comments

  1. cath says:

    As you well know, a family member of Cam’s was diagnosed with Leukemia so this one is close to my heart. If you haven’t signed up people, do it now!

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