This is my beautiful 37-year-old sister Nafisa who needs a kidney transplant. She was diagnosed with diabetes type 1 in December 2003 exactly one month after the passing of our brother (due to renal failure resulting from type 1 diabetes). At the end of 2015, medical specialists informed Nafisa she had developed kidney disease, a long-term result of living with diabetes. In July 2016, her physician a nephrologist in Uganda started her on dialysis and recommended kidney transplantation as a lasting solution. We have great Faith in our Almighty Father and absolute hope that if given the recommended treatment, Nafisa will recover and be a productive Ugandan again (she has been supporting widows, orphans, and her 2 children through Agribusiness).
We are now appealing to you all to help Nafisa have a kidney transplant which will give her quality of life so that she can get back to helping those who need her most. Nafisa is lucky to have 2 confirmed matching donors and 2 others waiting to do tests too. However, money is needed for her to go to India (Uganda has no facilities for the surgery) for the kidney transplant surgery.
You may donate in one of the following ways
- By clicking donate here below
- On the MTN Mobile money account Bagenda Wilfred 0777625495
- Account Number : Achom Haliima: BE49 7370 4072 3471 Swiftcode:KREDBEBB
The €30,000 needed includes the following costs;
- Hospital stay for preliminary work up and evaluation, pre-work up of donor, declaration of fitness and 8 days for recipient surgery, 4 days donor and all consultations
- Guest house accommodation for an estimated 2 months for patient, attendant and a month for the donor
- Dialysis before and after surgery
- Air tickets
- And a little margin for when complications arise
The family, friends, and well-wishers have helped contribute to the cost of the dialysis and all the various hospital admissions since July 2016. The cost of Nafisa’s treatment has increased yearly until 2016 when it got to the highest proportions, where we pay millions of Ugandan shillings weekly amounting to about 2,600,000 Ugandan shillings (€600) for dialysis, tests, medications etc. Nafisa's treatment included three-four times a week dialysis, tests and a long list of medications. The family, friends, and well-wishers have been able to keep Nafisa alive contributing already over 100 Million Ugandan shillings (over 23.000 euros) just between July 2016 and now. It has reached a point whereby the recommended weekly dialysis is not manageable and Nafisa now only has dialysis when funds are available ( which is mostly contributions from the family, friends, and well-wishers). This has resulted in sometimes having dialysis only once in a week.
A little bit about Nafisa
Nafisa is the 6th of nine children from her mother’s side and about 30th of fifty four children on her father’s side. She is my immediate follower. We grew up together fighting, laughing, having adventures. Our mother worked as an administrator at the district level , so every 2 years we moved to another district till 1986 when governments changed. We then had to go live in rural Eastern Ugandan which was torn up by cattle rustling and then civil war from 1987 to about 1992. We experienced the war for 2 years but by 1989 our mother had gotten another job in the capital so we moved and escaped the later stages of the war.
In 1993 our mother got sick and by mid-1995 she was diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer. Since there was no one to take care of her in the hospital for the last 3 months of her life. Nafisa who was then only 15 years old was taken out of school to take care of her. At this tender age, an older man masquerading as a family friend took advantage of her vulnerability, groomed her and impregnated her. Our mother died on December 21st, 1995. Nafisa gave birth to her first-born child Siraj in 1996 when she was only 16 years old. Needless to say, life was not ideal. It was not possible to go back to school as there was no caretaker for her child. She was also banished from home for some time and had to stay with relatives. One good thing is that Nafisa is hardworking so to help herself and her son she always stayed with extended family helping them with household chores and childcare and in turn she and her son had food, shelter and other basic needs.
By 1997 our older sister Madina completed university ,got a job and gave Nafisa and Siraj a home for the first time. By 1998 Madina had managed with help from our father to get Nafisa enrolled in a tailoring school. Two years later Madina had to go to graduate school which also meant not enough income. So Siraj and Nafisa had no home of their own again and had to move in with our oldest sister Safia whose own living situation was dire. Nafisa had managed to complete the tailoring course and was looking for employment. However getting a job as a tailor was near impossible without your own sewing machine so she went to do what she did before helping with household chores whilst taking care of Siraj.
By 2000 Madina was doing temporary jobs here and there and I had joined university where I was getting small allowance boosted with temporary jobs. With these combined incomes we were able to rent a house and educate Siraj. Meanwhile, as I mentioned earlier our brother who had childhood type 1 diabetes kidneys were starting to fail and his chief caretaker was Nafisa. So if he was admitted in the hospital she had to go take care of him. By 2003 he had kidney disease, of course, we did not know what that was at the time and on 14th, November 2003 he passed away at the age of 27 leaving behind 3 children and a widow. Exactly a month to his passing we rushed Nafisa to the emergency and we were later told she was in a diabetic coma. She came around the next day and so that’s how our fight with this disease started.
Between 2003 and 2005 managing Nafisa's diabetes was challenging. With the limited finances, it was not uncommon for Nafisa to go a day or so without insulin. Sometimes we were faced with the decision either Siraj’s school fees had to be paid or Nafisa’s insulin had to be bought or do we use the money to buy food? In 2005 Madina had a job again and I was in graduate school on a scholarship so we were able to provide for Nafisa’s medication, Siraj’s school fees, the orphans, siblings and the widow and to send Nafisa back to secondary school.
In 2006 our Auntie Agnes working at the UN took Nafisa under her wing to date. She would go on to be the manager of my Auntie’s affairs in Uganda a role she was born to do. She managed the construction of Auntie’s home. She was managing payment of school fees of all the orphans my auntie taking care of. Auntie Agnes guaranteed her healthcare, her son's school fees and accommodation and she was given an allowance. Nafisa being resourceful used this allowance to start agribusiness. She would buy produce during the harvesting season and cultivate some crops herself and sell this in the dry season. This proved to be profitable and she was able to finally be independent. With this independence she was back on her feet and met Steven.
In 2008 our father fell sick. Nafisa was again taking care of a parent and again for the second time in her life she was held a parent our dear father as he breathed his last on 19th, November. This was a tough time since both biological parents had now passed on. Nafisa was now left with a surrogate mother ( one of our stepmother who become her mum upon the passing of our mother) and other stepmothers.
On August 2013 her and Steven welcomed a son, Abraham. Generally, her life was back on track. She was independent taking care of herself, her kids, her surrogate mother, helping with our niece and nephews from our late brother and managing her diabetes. However, disaster struck again in 2015 when our stepmother Nafisa’s surrogate mother also died of cancer in her arms. And months later our maternal grandmother also passed away later in the year. So basically she was left with no more parents or grandparents and her only guardian was now our Auntie Agnes who had retired by now.
Nafisa has lived through a lot in her short life, but she is hardworking, kind, caring, giving, forgiving and does not give up easily I am proud to call her my sister. Diabetes is a horrific and nasty illness that has already robbed us of our brother and it affects so many people in a terrible way. Nafisa has also affected many people, in a positive way and despite all this adversity she still has that sparkle in her eye.
Luckily Nafisa is one of the better people and so deserving and so together we can show Nafisa how much we love her and we can now give back and make a difference. Thank you so much in advance for your generosity, love and support.