My name is Janice Lopez and I am a mother of an 18months old baby who has down syndrome and congenital heart defect CAVSD. He had survived 3 heart surgeries, his last surgery has funded by Gift of Life International, with the helped of families, friends, and anonymous donors and during those times I met a lot of babies similar to my son's case.
I am one of the co-founder of Lil Brave Hearts which started last July 2016. It started as a support group encouraging and helping each others emotionally, financially and spiritually. We are a group of 8 founders started and meet only in Facebook, we dont know each other personally, we never met, we talked and boom! we started the name Lil Brave Hearts. The only reason that connects us as we are all parents of a child with down syndrome. By then, we met a lot of parents who faced the same journey, started to meet and greet each other. Most of the first meet ups ended up in a hospital. All of us have a career in our own. I myself works as an OFW in UAE to support the financial needs of my son esp his medication. I myself faced difficulties in surpassing all these problems with my son's heart condition and being a down syndrome. I faced discrimation with in the family, friends, schools and hospitals. The discrimination in our society is a very tough battle to handle as a parent. Our medical system in our country is very poor. and its a fact that our babies are least prioritized in our public hospitals unless of course if you are able to fund the surgery in private. We have a lot of members in our support group which belongs to indigent families and having a child with down syndrome is a lot to spend of money because having down syndrome are associated of heart defects, hrishprung disease, colostomy,cataract, leukemia and needs different types of therapies in which most of us are unable to provide.
We in Lil Brave Hearts are conquering Congenital Heart Defects especially for indigent families who cannot afford at all for the surgery cost. I myself was helped and funded by Gift Of Life International through this man with a big heart Mr. Rob Raylman who is based in New York. I got the chance to meet him personally and I have seen his heart to our children. I was moved by his kindness. He is an answered prayers for us in the group. 3 out of our 25 children are flying to Gaslini Hospital, Genoa Italy. Here's the catch! Passport, Visa and airfare for the child and 1 companion are to be shouldered by the patient and we only have a month to make this possible. The surgery date is on June 12, 2017. At the moment we are selling shirts for this trip but we need other resources that is why I created this fundraise and we badly need help. Passports are on process, we are waiting for the invitation letter from Gaslini Hospital and Gift of Life International and after that we need to book there tickets. Please help us to raise this amount.
Thank you so much and God Bless us all.