“Richa was wise beyond her years. She was aware of our financial condition and did everything she could to help us. After a long day at school and completing her assignments, she would come to me in the kitchen with a loving embrace and would start helping me with the chores without me even having to ask her. ”
14-year-old Richa’s family was picture perfect. Their humble abode in Kumbhavali, Palghar used to resound with hearty laughter, when the daughters of the house Richa and Archie returned from school and animatedly narrated how their day was to their mother. However, the ambiance in the house turned gloomy in April this year, when every now and then, Richa started coming down with fever. Not knowing better, the family relied on medication from local clinics to help her come out of it. However, on 30th April, Richa suffered her first epileptic seizure, the first of the many to follow.
“That image of Richa contorting unnaturally haunts me to this day. And what's worse is that I had to go through that horrible experience again and again as it became a regular occurrence. She would lose consciousness after every seizure and was put on heavy medication. When the doctors told me about her condition, I couldn't understand the big words they used (FIRES-Febrile Infection-Related Epilepsy Syndrome). All I understood were words like ‘rare’ and ‘optimistic’ ."
- Chandrashekar, father
Richa is currently on ventilator support(PICU) at Bhaktivedanta Hospital, Mumbai and the doctors are optimistic of her recovery, provided she gets sustained medical treatment over a prolonged period. As per the doctors, her treatment will cost upwards of Rs. 15 lakh. Chandrashekar’s day job as a driver of a rented auto-rikshaw fetches him a meager income, which barely provides for the family. Through family and friend’s support, he was able to pay for the complicated and expensive diagnostic tests and Richa’s initial treatment.
How can you help?
Just as the doctors became optimistic of Richa’s recovery, even after she suffered from a rare neurological disorder, the family ran out of funds. Taking her off PICU support at this point will prove fatal. The family needs your urgent financial assistance to save their daughter.
Please share our story on Facebook and WhatsApp so our appeal can reach far and wide.