14-year-old Hassan from the Machinga district of Malawi was diagnosed with Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) last year. Since then, he and his mother have been in and out of hospital while he receives treatment at QECH, supported by World Child Cancer. They share their story:
“I first noticed something was wrong with my son in June last year. After being seen at Lilongwe [the local] health centre, we were told they could not treat him there and we were sent to the serious ward at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre.
When I was told that my child has cancer it caused me great pain.
Before my son received this diagnosis, I had never heard of cancer before and did not know that this could happen to children. However, I had hope when the doctors told me that my child will be treated and will become well again.
We have been in and out of the hospital for the past months. I am a farmer and Hassan is the fifth of my six children. I can’t work on the farm and my husband has to look after the other kids alone while I'm here.
Hassan was given blood last in October 2020 since then he has just been receiving treatment without being given additional blood. I can tell that my child has been in a lot of pain, especially when we run out of the painkiller drugs.
[After treatment] my child is better now than when we first went to Liwonde. Before he couldn’t sit up and was just lying down. But now he is able to play with his friends.
“It is very hard to be in the hospital and I miss my friends and school. I play for my school football team as a defender.
I am often in a lot of pain but I feel better than I did before.
When I grow up I would like to be a teacher, just like my teacher who I like so much.”
Malawi is one of the world's poorest nations, with over half the population living on less than a dollar a day. Without support treatment is not an option for many children with cancer. £30 could support services that enable the accurate diagnosis of two children with cancer in Malawi. Support our appeal today.