BENEFITING: Operation Medical
Have you ever thought about being unable to do things tomorrow that you did yesterday? Like any normal child, 10-year-old Ilayda Yildiz never considered that there might be a time when she was too weak to run around the park with her friends or play drums. These days, that’s all she dreams about. February 25, 2012 was a day Ilayda and her family will never forget. It was a beautiful day they spent at the lake, and Ilayda was so weak that her parents had to take her to the hospital. Not long after that came the diagnosis – Ilayda was fighting one of the deadliest childhood cancers, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL). Ilayda and her family thought they had won the war when she received a stem cell transplant in June 2015. But just two months later, her cancer came back. Ilayda’s situation worsened every day, until by November 2015 it was clear that all options had been exhausted. There are no more treatments in all of Europe that can help her beat this disease. They thought Ilayda’s only chance was CAR T-cell treatment in the United States, a whole ocean away from her home in Southern Germany. But now, we are so very sad. The CAR T-cell therapy has failed, even before it began, because the CD8 cells (the killer cells) will not grow in the lab! Ilayda is the first child that has EVER happened to. But she cannot fly home – there is one last chance. The doctors say a hematopoletic stem cell transplant from an umbilical cord donor may work, and we’ve been told that a donor match has been found! First, she’ll also have to undergo radiation and chemo to prepare. This sort of treatment is not possible in Tübingen, but this final option can cost upwards of A MILLION DOLLARS, depending on complications and after-treatment care! We have to deposit $500,000 in order for the preparations to even begin. In 3 to 4 weeks, Ilayda could be receiving her transplant. She says, “Papa, we can’t give up; we have to keep fighting.” Please help! If 500 companies gave just $1,000 – the cost of a small event marketing campaign, and 5,000 people gave just $100 – the cost of a fancy dinner out for a family of four just like Ilayda’s, our fundraiser would be over in a day. Fighting this disease has been awful, but it has strengthened our faith in people – we know we are not alone! Every dollar counts, and every donation is generous. This is Ilayda’s last chance, so please give!