Weʼre raising £3,500 to help my friend Alina pay for her mother's surgery
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Hello, I am creating this page in the hope that we can help my good friend Alina pay for vital surgery for her mother. She has no way to raise the funds on her own. I have been tutoring her for 2 1/2 years and have come to know her and her family very well. She is one of the happiest and kindest girls I have ever had the pleasure to meet. Even in the most difficult times she has always been positive. I asked her to write a letter for everyone, which I have had translated, so I will let her explain the situation to you in her own words:
Letter from Alina
Hello everyone, I am writing to kindly ask for your help. It is not easy for me to turn to others but I have run out of options and need your help to save my mother who is the most important person in my world.
Allow me to tell you about myself. My name is Alina and I am 24 years old. This is me when I am looking healthy!
I come from the country of Kyrgyzstan , maybe you did not hear of it before, but it is a famous country on the old Silk Road . We are just three people in my family, me, my sister, and my mother. My father left us when I was born and we have not seen him since then, and we do not want to. My mother fought hard and raised us alone.
This is me with my mother, Gulya, which means flower in our language. This photo is from a few years ago. My mother is a very proud woman and will not let me take pictures of her when she is sick. She always wants people to see her as strong! She has always been strong for me and my sister.
Four years ago I was very ill and had major surgery on my intestines and I never fully recovered. My immune system is weak and I am often sick and need to spend more time in hospital. Because of this I have not been able to find a permanent job and have been forced to do many small jobs instead. For a while I was sewing rhinestones onto t-shirts, for $2 a t-shirt. Can you believe it?
I was unable to complete my studies because we could not afford to pay the fee for the contract to the university but we were managing to survive until my mother got sick.
She had an early menopause and this aggravated her previous illness (pancreatitis, cervical erosion, cysts) which we had not yet had the money to fully treat. She began to lose a lot of weight and in August this year she collapsed and was rushed to hospital. The doctors said that they found a lot of fibroids and another large growth that they were very worried about.
Because of the fibroids, her period does not stop and she bleeds constantly. This caused her haemoglobin level to fall to 50 and it is why she collapsed and lost consciousness.
Doctors at the hospital were able to raise it back to 94 but the bleeding continues so it just falls again. She is very weak, can barely eat and has constant headaches. The doctors tell us that it is essential that they operate very quickly. We did not have enough money for her to stay in a hospital bed so she is at home with my sister and me. We lost our nice apartment as we could not afford it and had to move to a small room with coal fire and a toilet in the street. It is very cold in the winter months and not at all ideal for a sick woman. But we make do the best we can. We try to stay always positive for each other.
The doctors have said that for the operation and medicine we will need to pay roughly $4,000, and then some more if we want her to be able to stay at the hospital for her recovery instead of being sent home. There is no way that my sister and I could ever find this money even if we had a year to do so, in the short time we have it is certainly impossible.
My sister and I do not have this kind of money. I have not been working and my own previous treatment was expensive and I am still in debt to many because of it. Everything that my sister earns goes to paying for our apartment and feeding us. The average salary for a woman here in Kyrgyzstan is only $150 a month.
My good friend who has been trying to help and support me in the last few difficult years suggested that maybe I could try asking for help here. He is kindly helping me with my English so that I can write to you.
Dear reader, I know that you do not know me. I am just a stranger from a country that maybe you have not even heard of before. I really love my mother, she suffered a lot to raise me and my sister alone. I owe her my life and I want her to live long and be happy.
I am truly ashamed to ask for help from others, I know you all have your own lives and work and family to take care of, but I have nowhere else to turn. I do not want to lose my mother after she has fought so hard for me and my sister for the last 24 years. Without Paul's constant encouragement I might have already given up hope.
I will be sure to update you on all progress. I would be happy to reply to all your questions or talk with you. I can answer all about my mother's condition and I am happy to introduce you all to my country and it's history and culture.
Thank-you so much for taking the time to read this.
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About the fundraiser
I am a software developer who tries to do his best to always give something back to the world. 5 years ago I was lucky enough to meet someone who worked for the Ministry of Youth in Kyrgyzstan, and since that time I have been tutoring and mentoring young adults in that country.