Maya and Shamaun's wedding
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About the NGO
St. Jude India ChildCare Centres
Around 50,000 children are diagnosed with cancer in India annually. Yet only 10,000 travel to cities to receive low-cost, high quality treatment.
According to St. Judes CEO, Usha Banerji: “Childhood cancers have a very high cure rate [70-80%]. However, many families abandon therapy because they have difficulty finding suitable accommodation.”
St. Judes provide a cost free, cheerful, infection-free environment and proper nutrition for needy families - who often resort to sleeping on the street near their child's hospital - to ensure that their sick wards are not vulnerable to secondary infections from poor living conditions during in or outpatient treatment.
St. Judes' goal is for every child with a life-threatening disease to be treated at a hospital with a childcare centre nearby so that the centre can help “facilitate the recovery of children [so that] every child will realise his or her potential and transform their lives”.
A patient’s mother explains their journey: “When we were asked to go to Bombay for treatment, our first thought was, ‘where will we stay in a city like Bombay?’. We were told that instead of living on the street we should try for admission at St. Judes; here we would get all the support and our child would be safe from infection.”
Deepak is one of many success stories. Diagnosed with blood cancer in 2010 while in 7th standard, today he has finished treatment, is off medication, and only comes for routine check-ups between his college studies. Dishka, who came to St. Judes in 2008, was cured of Dysgerminoma - a rare tumour of the ovary - and is now in her 2nd year of a computer engineering degree.
At age nine, Surodip spent six months at St Jude in 2015-16. He was afraid of losing an academic year due to his illness, but with the help of St. Judes' teachers, he surprised his teachers back home by completing his annual exam and forgetting nothing despite his extended absence and months of rigorous treatment.
In 2006 St. Judes began with one centre with eight units. They can now host 388 families in 32 centres across India. Their vision is to have 1000 units by 2021. They need your help to achieve this ambitious goal - to give children access to health facilities that will give them a fighting chance for survival.