The joy of welcoming your first-born can swiftly shift when faced with life's unexpected challenges. Maria, born on January 2nd, 2021, started her life with symptoms of yellow eyes, a hard belly, and non-growing nails. The devastating news came on August 11th, 2021: stage 3 Hepatoblastoma, a rare liver cancer. Suddenly, Maria's mom was submerged in fear and worry. Financial challenges loomed with the mounting medical bills. Enter Cancer Alliance Network (CAN). Upon a visit, a dedicated caseworker at CAN provided immediate assistance and solace. Within a week, they were covering car payments and providing gift cards for necessities, ensuring they were not battling alone. Maria’s journey involved intense chemotherapy sessions and an agonizing wait for a liver transplant. At just one year old in January 2022, she successfully underwent the transplant. By March 24th, 2022, following further treatments, the bells rang signifying Maria's victory against cancer.
Set to turn three in 2024, Maria’s mom expresses profound gratitude for the donor and CAN's unwavering support. She says, "CAN's assistance was the lifeline I needed during our darkest times." Founded in 2002, CAN offers invaluable assistance to families affected by cancer in Collier and Lee Counties, echoing the spirit of neighbors helping neighbors. Support this pivotal mission at www.CancerAllianceNetwork.org or call 239-643-HOPE (4673).