Why Chai for Cancer
Read our patient stories to know how each cup of chai raised to our cause is used to support those in need.
Join the Chai for Cancer 2020 campaign by raising your cup and drinking to a cause. Your one cup of chai will go a long way in helping a cancer patient live in dignity and hope!
Patient Story 1:
Vishnukant Bhau and his wife – there has not been even one time when this gentle, shy lady has not accompanied her husband to visit his treating oncologist and then come to Bombay to collect the medicines – all the way from Parbhani. No matter summer or monsoons, no cutting corners when it came to his comfort. He calls her “his pillar” on whom he can lean whenever he feels the need. Both of them were moist eyed yesterday when they spoke of all the care they have received from their doctor and from Chai for Cancer and The Max Foundation.
Each cup of chai raised goes towards supporting cancer patients and ensuring they have access to medications and treatment, allowing them to live with dignity and hope.
Patient Story 2:
The little boy who usually would be full of good cheer when he visited us to collect his medication was visibly upset. His mother too seemed very disturbed. Upon gentle probing, I found out that he had to be taken out of school. At first they wouldn’t tell me more; and then the father said they had had to choose between getting the child’s monitoring tests done and paying the next six months’ school fees. Neither the lab nor the school would allow any flexibility in payment.
“What to do Madam,” he cried. “You tell me what you would have done?”
Raise your cup of Chai and dedicate it to getting vital monitoring tests done for a young school boy so that he does not have to choose between his blood tests and his school.
Patient Story 3:
It was a hot May afternoon, the sun fierce and unrelenting and almost no breeze to speak of. Despite the Arabian Sea kissing almost all of the coastline, the city of Bombay was by now sizzling. He walked into our office dripping with sweat, panting and struggling to wipe his moist brow with his already damp neck kerchief. His shirt and trousers were sticking to him and if it weren’t for a fact that we knew the sun was shining outside, we could have easily believed he had been caught in a shower. His was a familiar face; a daily wage earner and migrant labourer who lived in the distant suburb of Malad and who worked at a construction site. His young son had been diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia and he had found this place to stay after great difficulty . He knew it was imperative that he bring his wife to the city from the village so they could both stay here and care for the child who was being treated in Bombay.
When it was time for the meds to be collected, the father would make the trip across the city having to take the day off thereby foregoing the day’s wages. Today was no different but his disheveled condition was worrisome. Upon some gentle probing, it turned out that not having enough money for the bus fare, he had borrowed a bicycle from a neighbour in the slum he lived in and cycled all the way – from Malad to Worli.
Chai for Cancer raises funds to support families who struggle to keep their children in treatment. Dedicate your morning cup of chai and make sure a father does not have to cycle miles in the hot son to collect his son’s medication.
Patient Story 4:
It was with a heavy heart the team decided to close his case. We hadn’t heard from him in many months; maybe well over a year even. Despite repeated calls and attempts to counsel and emphasise the importance of compliance, we had not seen him nor been able to make any contact. He was a farmer from the interiors of Maharashtra and his life had been a constant struggle.
A small holding where he grew vegetables, struggled with the vagaries of Mother Nature and tried his best to provide for his family of six. He was proud of the fact that he could send his children to school and even more proud that his young daughters as well his sons went to school. We had grown close to him, following up and being with him all throughout the eight odd years he had been with us. He was a role model for other patients and a regular at our support group meetings. We feared the worst and then he turned up!
He had taken a loan to make one long overdue trip to the city and see the doctor and collect his medication. He confessed to us that he was finding it more and more difficult to spend money on himself and could not afford the cost of the periodic tests his doctor said he needed to do. He dreaded going to his doctor. It meant denying his wife and daughters many basic necessities. He needed to also think of finding suitable grooms for his daughters. His sickness was taking too much away from his family.
The Chai you will pay for at a Chai for Cancer Adda will help restore the dignity of many elderly patients like this simple farmer and give him hope once again.