Hope 4 Adoma
UPDATE FROM KODJO DATED 7/28/11
It is with deep deep regret that I tell you that my sister did not make it. She passed on Sunday and my family has been very devastated by the news. We are now making funeral preparations to take her home to Ghana for her burial. I just wanted to say a big thank you for all the help Walk On gave our family to raise funds and all the support and compassion that came from the organization. We fought a good fight but I guess it was her time to go so all we can do now is to pray for her soul to rest in perfect peace. Thank you once more and let me know if there is anything at all I can do to help others who are in need through your organization.
My name is Kodjo Karikari and my younger sister, Akua Adoma Ofori (17 years old) was diagnosed with a brain tumor late last year. It is a third ventricular pilocytic astrocytoma located in the thalamus region of her brain. She first presented with headaches, confusion and lethargy before experiencing seizures and going into a coma for some time. A shunt was inserted to relieve the pressure on her brain. She was also put on a variety of steroidal medications which caused her to gain over 70 pounds in a very short period of time. She is now struggling with diabetes and thyroid complications as a side effect from the steroids. She is currently in Accra, Ghana but the hospitals there lack the expertise and equipment to perform the surgery that is needed to save her life and her condition is steadily worsening.
We initially reached out to a hospital in Pennsylvania that was at first eager to take on her case on a charitable basis but they have since withdrawn that offer. We have since been reaching out to St Jude's, Cedars-Sinai, UPMC, Jefferson University, Temple University and others in the hopes of finding a hospital to help her. Every day is a struggle for her and each new day, I am told to strengthen my efforts to get her medical attention in the United States or face the probability that we will lose her. I cannot imagine life without my little sister. She has her whole life ahead of her. Like any other teenage girl she has hopes and aspirations and I want her to realize all those dreams. As a final semester senior, who is the first in my family to graduate from university, this should be a time of great joy for us. Instead, we are filled with sadness and uncertainty.
In an effort to raise awareness and funds I have been working with various student groups at Bucknell University (Bucknell African Students Association and Bucknell University Student Transfer Association) who are eager to help with these initiatives. Additionally, several concerned individuals from as far away as Italy and Germany to as close as New York and Pennsylvania have been reaching out to their friends and families.
The Walk On Foundation has generously offered to assist us. By visiting their website people can donate to our cause via paypal. Alternatively donors can send checks directly to the Foundation. I thank everyone who has helped so far through donations, advice or a show of sympathy. We will continue to pray and hope for the best outcome.
Since the writing of that letter, Walk On Foundation Inc and Bucknell University have joined forces with the community in raising over $19,000 for Adoma. Adoma is currently hospitalized at York, PA hospital and is receiving treatment. If you would like to donate to Adoma please send a check to Walk On Foundation Inc. P.O. Box 62 Mifflinburg, PA 17844 and notate "ADOMA". Thanks for your support.