Help Save Esha!
4-year-old Esha was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia in May 2021. Esha needs a stem cell transplant to survive, and her parents are advocating to all South Asians for support!
On May 13th 2021, Esha was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia. Since then, the lives of Esha and her parents have completely changed.
Despite spending the last 15 weeks at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, the two intensive cycles of chemotherapy she has undergone have unfortunately been ineffective. She desperately needs to find a stem cell donor before the end of September to save her life.
Esha deserves a long, healthy life and a stem cell match would give her a fighting chance. You might be the match that we are praying for.
A message from Esha’s Mother
My name is Kavitha and I am Esha’s mother. Most of you are probably already aware and have had a glimpse into Esha’s journey thus far. I felt that now was the time I introduce myself, express our gratitude as a family and most importantly, share what life has truly been like for Esha and our family since her diagnosis.
On Thursday 13th May, our daughter Esha was diagnosed with a very rare form of Acute Myeloid Leukaemia. From that very moment, our world came crashing down. We were in complete shock. Since, we have had to endure an indescribable feeling of pain and despair that has been utterly soul shattering.
When we were first told of her diagnosis, so many questions were running through my head. How could this possibly be happening to our precious baby? Esha is only 4 years old, why her? What could cause such a drastic transformation in her health?
Esha was immediately rushed to Great Ormond St Hospital where she was admitted into the ‘Lion Ward’. Esha was urgently seen by a team of specialist haematologists and oncologists. The former diagnose and clinically manage disorders of the blood and bone marrow.
They began to explain the complex nature of her cancer (AML), an extremely rare form especially in children. A young child’s chances of survival with AML are much slimmer than those with ALL where success rates are much higher post treatment.
We did not have time to both mentally and emotionally process the information relayed by doctors. Our poor little baby spent the next 24 hours having 20+ attempts of drawing blood from the veins in her inner arms, back of her hands and tops of her feet! Her blood was simply too sticky due to the cancer to get a good enough sample for testing.
Naturally, Esha was absolutely traumatised by this. We felt completely helpless with no way to protect our child from this suffering that was only going to become a lot worse as time progressed.
Her bravery and courageousness throughout this journey has been indescribable. I have witnessed adults go through cycles of chemotherapy, but to witness a 4-year old child fight through the suffering every day has been a true inspiration to us all. Esha fights every battle with so much grace. As parents we are proud of her ability to display courage, bravery and strength throughout this journey. Despite the obstacles that she faces, she still finds the energy to thank the nurses, doctors and staff each time they walk into her room.
Over the last 4 months, Esha has taught me to hone in on what’s important in life. To always show gratitude for our lives and to never complain about things that are petty and insignificant. Esha is literally my SUPERHERO! She is our World.
Our little brave fighter, still has considerable amounts of cancer within her bone marrow and her cancer has been resistant to treatment. Neither my husband, myself nor my daughter are a match to be her stem cell donor. She only has one option and that is to have a bone marrow transplant. It may be her only chance to fight the cancer, despite it becoming the most intensive procedure she will have faced yet. A bone marrow transplant has its own risks and complications post the transplant and we are so worried whether her little body that is so damaged, will be able to withstand the intense procedure which warrants another tough 3 months in hospital at the very least.
We desperately need to find a donor who matches her HLA as close to a 100% as possible. To put it into perspective, finding a 90% match is like finding a needle in a haystack. This is why we are turning to the Great British public. We are relentlessly trying to raise awareness by educating and helping the BAME communities, in particular, understand the importance of how a non-invasive procedure could make you the saviour for our Esha. This simple act of kindness can save our daughter’s life and give her a fighting chance to win the battle against this aggressive cancer. You could help Esha have the chance to go to school, have her first sleepover, graduate from University and many more life experiences. For this reason, we implore you to come to our swab test drop-in events and to register to become a stem cell donor today!
I would like to take this time to say a HUGE thank you to every single person that has come forward to help Esha thus far. Words are simply not enough to show our appreciation and gratitude to all of you who have followed Esha’s story, registered, shared her story, sent love, prayers and gifts to Esha and finally to those who have helped our family behind the scenes in so many ways.
We are simply overwhelmed by the sheer kindness, selflessness and generosity of everyone from all over the world.
We cannot believe how so many communities are uniting together to help one cause, irrespective of religion, faith and ethnicity. It really brings more tears to my eyes and strengthens my faith in humanity. This has been the only light within the never-ending darkness.
Please also know that we understand how difficult it will be to find a match but your one act of kindness could make a life changing difference to someone else who may be in similar situation to Esha, should you not be the right match for her.
Each and everyone one of you who are supporting Esha’s campaign are HEROES in our eyes and I only wish it was possible for me to give each of you all the biggest hug to say THANK YOU! Your support is immeasurable and so is our gratitude for everything positive we have experienced from you all. With your help we shall continue to push ahead to find Esha a match.
To help save Esha, you can get a swab test done through one of the links below, or support Esha by help raising awareness.
UK and International: www.dkms.org.uk
Swab Test Drop In: www.fatsoma.com