Fariha, aged 5, Bangladesh

Five-year old Fariha from Bangladesh was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) earlier this year.  

 

Five-year-old Fariha lives with her mother and grandparents in Bangladesh. When Fariha suddenly developed severe hand and leg pain, her grandmother Labiba immediately took her to the local hospital. The doctors provided painkillers but there was no improvement and Fariha remained unable to walk. 

After a month of tests, the family still had no answers. The doctor then referred the family to the BSMUU paediatric unit in the capital city, Dhaka; a hospital supported by World Child Cancer. It was there that Fariha confirmed she had leukaemia. Labiba recalls her shock at hearing the news: 

 “I was speechless. I tried to cry but I couldn’t. I just imagined my daughter’s (Fariha’s Mother) face. What would happen when she heard the news!” 

Labiba’s daughter is a single mother to Fariha and has already experienced a great deal of hardship. She suffered abuse at the hands of her husband and eventually fled back to her parents’ home with her young daughter. 

The cancer diagnosis has had an impact on the whole family. Labiba says, 

 “I have two more daughters and one son. They are students. We are spending all our resources for the treatment of my grandchild. But now we cannot afford it. I cannot pay for the treatment she needs but I cannot bear to see her die. What will I do now?” 

At first, relatives aided the family with money for Fariha’s treatments but now the relatives do not want any communication with them. Tension over money has become a huge worry for the family.

Fariha’s mother, grandmother and uncle stay with her at the hospital, sometimes having to sleep in the corridor. Fariha’s mother is very withdrawn and doesn’t talk to anyone. 

Chemotherapy has made Fariha physically very weak and she suffers with the side-effects of treatment. Her grandmother says  

“When saline is pushed in her hand, she cries a lot. I cannot see the tears of my grandchild. It makes me feel helpless.” 

However, despite this, the family says they are pleased with the treatment and are seeing some improvement in Fariha. They have received financial support from World Child Cancer, which Labiba thanks God for. They will try to continue the treatment for as long as possible, but they need more support in order to meet these costs. Labiba’s only wish is: 

 “I just want to see the smile on the face of my daughter and my grandchild” 

 

All children deserve the chance of a future, regardless of their family’s financial situation. 1,300 children are expected to develop cancer each year in Bangladesh. Just £25 could pay for accurate diagnosis for one child with cancer, ensuring they are given the correct treatment, increasing their chances of survival.

Hassan’s story

14-year-old Hassan from the Machinga district of Malawi was diagnosed with Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) last year.

Read more

Tiwo’s story

Five years after developing cancer and two years of treatment later, six-year-old Tiwo is doing well

Read more

Franklyn’s Story

Meet Franklyn, now 17, who is fully recovered from cancer and dreams of becoming a doctor to help others

Read more

Rebecca’s Success Story

Rebecca is now able to return to school after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana

Read more

My road to recovery

Prince went on to become a childhood cancer advocate and help many other children just like him when he recovered from leukaemia. Read More

Read more

Discover More Stories…

Tiwo’s story

Five years after developing cancer and two years of treatment later, six-year-old Tiwo is doing well

Read more

Hassan’s story

14-year-old Hassan from the Machinga district of Malawi was diagnosed with Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) last year.

Read more

Franklyn’s Story

Meet Franklyn, now 17, who is fully recovered from cancer and dreams of becoming a doctor to help others

Read more

Rebecca’s Success Story

Rebecca is now able to return to school after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana

Read more

My road to recovery

Prince went on to become a childhood cancer advocate and help many other children just like him when he recovered from leukaemia. Read More

Read more

Estaphanie is excited to start university!

Meet Estaphanie, who is excited to start university after being forced to take time out of school following a cancer diagnosis

Read more

Meet Bulu

Bulu is looking forward to following in his brother’s footsteps getting back on the football field

Read more

Meet Oscar

Oscar was six years old when his mother noticed a swelling on his tummy and took him to a traditional village doctor

Read more
Will you join us?

Together we can close the gap in childhood cancer care.

DONATE