The Sick Pikin Project
The Sick Babies Donation project started as a one-off activity with the sole aim of raising funds for baby Mustapha. A group of young people came together to champion the process. The team of young people were drawn from various fields of work, a Clothing Designer, a Journalist, A humanitarian Aid Worker and the mother of baby Mustapha who was also a development worker started to champion fundraising in January 2018 primarily to raise funds for baby Mustapha so that we can send him to India where his transplant was done. Baby Mustapha was suffering from Biliary Atresia and needed a liver transplant and his mother volunteered to be the donor.
The challenge was heavy we took almost 5 months trying to raise funds and with the intervention of the First Lady – Fatima Bio after we reached out to her to seek her intervention, she became willing and did a 2 minute video which went viral and at the given time, we had already raised about USD 10,000. Her video helped move many to donate including sports betting company Mercury International. This climaxed the campaign and we were able to raise the needed funds Mustapha went for his surgery, which was successful and he returned.
The Lead Campaigner followed baby Mustapha to India and built a relationship and partnership with the hospital which has yielded a positive collaborative linkage. Upon his return to Sierra Leone, there came baby Marian and that was in June 2018. We reached out to Max Super Specialty Hospital in India where baby Mustapha’s surgery was done and they provided us with an almost 20% discount from USD 36,000 which was the transplant fee for baby Mustapha to USD 27,100 which is what was paid for baby Marian, baby Marian was also suffering from Biliary Artresia. It was a very difficult process to start again. We raised awareness for almost 3 months without a single donation after which we were able to start having funds coming in and after 6 months month Baby Marian was flown to India for her surgery. There were several challenges. But thankfully it happened and it was successful also.
During the same time when baby Marian’s campaign was still on, came baby Mariama who was suffering from frontal Encephalocele and needed USD 10,000 to do her restoration surgery. We championed both cases, it took a pretty long time but in the end, we succeeded and Baby Mariama was also sent to travel together with baby Marian both surgeries were carried out and Baby Mariama’s surgery was also successful.
After that case, we then saw that too many sick babies were coming up so we decided to set up an organization to standardize things and change from individual cases to collective organizational format. Master Carlos was the first child who benefited from the newly founded Baby Sick Babies Donation Project. And after the official process, the Foundation now have 5 new cases and the number of cases increases daily.