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Dedication to Aleem, Mommy Kaneez, Sister Kamie & Family


It is once again with a heavy heart that I sit here in the early hours of the morning trying to find the words to write….

Today is Diwali, the Festival of Lights, a day of celebration that spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair.

Today is also the day that our Little Fighter, Aleem’s greatest wish would have been made manifest as he would have flown up to Durban with his mommy Kaneez and sister Kamie to meet Gambit the Dolphin at uShaka Marine World today.

Today is also the day that Aleem’s Family and Loved Ones will say their final goodbyes as his funeral takes place at 9am…

Emotions are all over the place… there are no words…

 

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Liquid Biopsy New Hope for Precision Therapies for Retinoblastoma Tumours


Retinoblastoma is a type of eye cancer that develops in the light-sensitive lining of the eye, called the retina.

Retinoblastoma can occur at any age but mainly occurs in children younger than 5 years of age and most often in those younger than 2.

In many developing countries where tumours can progress until they literally burst out of eyes, retinoblastoma remains an often fatal diagnosis, whereas in other countries the survival rate has risen to 98%.

Retinoblastoma was one of the first cancers to have its genetic origins identified in the late 1980s — a finding that helped launch the current era of personalised treatments that have transformed treatment of breast, lung, and prostate cancer.

To date though, children who develop these rare tumours have not benefited from that wave of precision diagnostics and therapies. This is mainly due to the fact that doctors have not been able to biopsy the tumours for genetic information that could guide treatment, without removing the very eyes the clinicians are trying so hard to save.

You can read about our own Little Fighter, Helen’s story HERE

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Honouring Aleem Bowman – 👼 Forever 5 👼


Last week we put out a plea for donations to help make a make a last wish come true for young Aleem, a 5-year-old boy with terminal cancer.

It is with overwhelming sadness and aching hearts that today we have to share with you the heartbreaking news that Little Fighter Aleem Bowman earned his Angel Wings at 19H20 last night, 15th October.

Rest in Peace, Aleem ^Forever 5^

Aleem would have flown to Durban with his mom and sister – accompanied by Mandie from the Little Fighters Cancer Trust – this coming Thursday to meet Gambit and the other dolphins at uShaka Marine World…

In the meantime an opportunity was presented for Aleem to experience his other love – the love of flying and all things do with flying, speed and height – by going on a chartered flight around Cape Town with his mom and sister on Friday afternoon.

Unfortunately this was also not to be…

They were all gathered at the airport ready to go on the flight then, just before they were about to board the plane, Aleem started vomiting up blood and his nose started to bleed.

He was rushed through to Red Cross Hospital and given platelets after which he and his family returned home. Aleem’s Mommy asked the doctor to be straightforward with her about how much time she thought Aleem had left, and the doctor told his mom that they should spend as much time with Aleem as possible and that they need to prepare themselves, as he could go at any time.

Aleem was not well over the weekend and was admitted to hospital on Sunday morning.

The doctor informed Aleem’s mommy at this stage that her son would most likely not make it through the day…

Aleem was diagnosed with Stage IV Neuroblastoma in September 2016, and underwent RCCH High Risk Neuroblastoma Protocol until April 2017, which included tests, scans, blood work, regular transfusions, hospitalisation, intensive chemotherapy and various other treatments.

Unfortunately none of these worked for Aleem and he was eventually put on maintenance chemo for a short while after all treatment options had been pursued, until that too was stopped as it was not helping and in actual fact may have done more harm than good to continue.

Aleem’s mommy decided that palliative care would be continued at home as she did not want Aleem to spend his last little while in a hospital.

 

Our deepest condolences go out to Aleem’s Mommy Kaneez, sister Kamie and all other Loved Ones.

May Allah grant him a high place in Jannah In Sha Allah  
May his Loved Ones find contentment in knowing that their Beautiful Boy is no longer suffering and in pain
Ya Allah place sabr and contentment in the hearts of this family In Sha Allah Ameen

 

candle16

Forever in Our Hearts

 

✨Foodie Friday ✨The Inimitable Sprout


Summer is coming to South Africa, and summer is a great time to celebrate fresh food. Summer dishes ranging from salads to burgers are even more tasty and nutritious when topped with a lesser-known vegetable: fresh sprouts. Sprouts are tiny plants produced without soil — a type of fresh greens that can be grown virtually anywhere, at any time of year.

Fresh and tasty sprouts are raw, vegan, low in fat and cholesterol-free. Add them to a dish and you’ll be getting Vitamin C, Folic Acid, and good phytonutrients. Sprouts are also great for the digestion!

Sprouts are nutritional powerhouses that add flavour, texture and contrast to a salad or sandwich. Most varieties go from seed to sprout in about five days. They don’t need soil, so there’s no mess. They’re compact, so they can grow indoors, in small spaces. The quickness of this crop makes it a great project for kids — they love watching the seeds germinate and grow.

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Enzyme Therapy and Cancer


There are hundreds of ways to heal cancer and enzyme therapy is seen to be a very effective treatment.

The idea of healing cancer with enzymes was first discovered by Dr John Beard, an embryologist who spent 20 years researching cancer.

He found that pancreatic enzymes were not present in the blood of cancer patients.  Although his first article was published in 1902, his theory about cancer still holds up to rigorous scientific scrutiny.

Dr John Beard proposed in 1906 that pancreatic proteolytic digestive enzymes represent the body’s main defence against cancer, and that enzyme therapy would be useful as a treatment for all types of cancer.

During the first two decades of the twentieth century, Dr Beard’s thesis attracted some attention in academic circles, and several case reports in the medical literature documented tumour regression and even remission in terminal cancer patients treated with proteolytic enzymes.

In 1911, Dr Beard published a monograph entitled The Enzyme Therapy of Cancer and Its Scientific Basis, which summarised his therapy and the supporting evidence.

After Dr Beard’s death in 1923, the enzyme therapy was largely forgotten. Periodically, other practitioners have rediscovered Dr Beard’s work, and used pancreatic proteolytic enzymes as an alternative cancer treatment.

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✨Thankful Thursday✨ Garth Taylor


Garth Taylor is considered a pioneer of the South African music industry; he is also a  self-taught SAMA nominated artist, and is most renowned for being a chart topping singer-songwriter and recording artist.

What few people know though, is that Garth is also a fitness fanatic whose second passion is kickboxing (he won the SA Amateur Kickboxing Champion in the Lightweight Category in 2014).

On Friday 15 September Garth entered the White Collar Boxing ring for the second time on behalf of the Little Fighters Cancer Trust.

Garth competed in the White Collar Boxing 19 event at Scarlet Ribbon in Modderfontein, in an effort to raise Childhood Cancer Awareness as well as to raise funds for the Little Fighters Cancer Trust.  White Collar boxing is essentially recreational and uses the sport as a means of personal development for people to push themselves and achieve individual objectives.

With many of our Little Fighters sending Garth video messages of encouragement, he could do nothing other than repeat his stellar performance of last year, and once again win his match – to the delight of all our Little Fighters! Congratulations, Garth, you are a real Warrior for our Little Fighters!!

A shout-out also goes to Andrew Savvides, Garth’s opponent for the great Fight and for his Support for Garth’s cause!

 

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Life after Childhood Cancer Treatment


Completing cancer treatments can bring forth a range of emotions for Childhood Cancer patients and their families.

While they will certainly be relieved to have finished chemotherapy or radiation, there is often anxiety around relapse, returning to “normal life,” or how to handle side effects that occur years down the road.

Finishing treatment can be a very scary time; there is something about regular clinic visits that is reassuring. When families don’t have to return for a couple of months, they can sometimes feel anxious knowing they will not have that regular check-in.

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Fighting Cancer with Broccoli Sprouts


We have spoken before about cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, cabbage, kale, broccoli and brussels sprouts being full of cancer-fighting nutrients, but did you know that their sprouted forms, which are less than a few days old, can actually pack a stronger punch in the fight against cancer?

Sprouts from the seeds of vegetables begin to germinate within days of being soaked in water. Numerous studies have found that the highest cancer protective properties are most concentrated in these sprouts at a time of 3 days following sprouting

Research has shown that making sprouts a daily part of your diet can not only reduce the incidence of numerous types of cancers, but that the nutrients in sprouts may actually reverse the damage already created by the development of cancer in your body.

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Managing Family Life when Your Child has Cancer


When a child is diagnosed with cancer, the parents are immediately transformed from working parents with young children, to parental caregivers for a child with cancer.

Often, one of the parents, usually the mother, has to give up work in order to look after the needs of the Child with cancer, and this adds additional stress to the family who is already under extreme stress due to this devastating illness.

The fact that one of the parents has to give up their job in order to look after the Child with Cancer means that the household is now reduced to a one-income household, which means that the family now has more of a financial burden and only half of the income.

Childhood Cancer means visits to the hospital, visits to the clinic, additional travel expenses, additional accommodation expenses, medication, special dietary requirements and so much more…

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Genetics Can Help Predict Childhood Cancers


The mapping of the human genome has ushered in the age of precision cancer medicine, in which an individual’s treatment can be tailored to the specific genetic abnormalities of his or her disease.

In recent years, much attention has been brought to genetic testing for cancer risk, particularly around Angelina Jolie and her decision to undergo preventative surgeries.

Amy Kindstedt, a 9-year-old, was diagnosed with Pleuropulmonary Blastoma (PPB), a rare tumour of the lung, in 2014. PPB tumours can progress from a more benign to a more aggressive type if not detected early. Because she had a particularly aggressive form, her treatment required the removal of her left lung, radiation, and a year of chemotherapy

Knowing that PPB is often caused by mutations in a gene known as DICER1, her Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s care team tested Amy for the gene. Once they found she had a mutation in the gene, her parents, grandparents, and younger brothers Hunter and Thatcher were tested as well.

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