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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.

 

candle16

Forever in Our Hearts

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What will CAR T-Cell Therapy for Paediatric ALL Treatment Mean to Africa?


Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) T-Cell Therapy is a form of cancer immunotherapy which seeks to sharpen and strengthen the immune system’s inherent cancer-fighting powers.

CAR T-Cell Therapy was approved in August 2017 ~ the first time that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved CAR T-cell therapy for a form of cancer ~ for the treatment of paediatric and young adult patients with B-cell ALL that has relapsed or hasn’t responded to previous treatments.

Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) is a type of leukaemia in which a group of white blood cells, called lymphocytes, are affected. Leukaemia is the most common form of cancer in children, and about 80% of children with leukaemia have Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.

CAR T-Cell Therapy involves treating patients with modified versions of their own immune system T cells ­– white blood cells that help protect the body from disease.

Lewis Silverman, MD, Clinical Director of the Hematologic Malignancy Center at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, said:

It’s a very exciting development in our ability to treat childhood ALL. It offers hope to those that we haven’t been able to treat with conventional therapy. This is a hugely exciting time in childhood leukaemia research”

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❣️URGENT❣️ Help Make a Dying Boy’s Wish Come True 🙏


Today we put out a very urgent plea for help to make a wish come true for young Aleem, a 5-year-old boy with terminal cancer.

Little Fighter Aleem Bowman was born on 25 July 2012. When he was admitted to Red Cross Children’s Hospital on 15 September 2016, he was diagnosed with Stage IV Neuroblastoma.

Aleem went through RCCH High Risk Neuroblastoma Protocol until April 2017, which included tests, scans, blood work, regular transfusions, hospitalisation, intensive chemotherapy and other treatments, and loads more.

Mommy Kaneez, a single mother, has had to handle a lot, and unfortunately this became even worse when the doctors informed her recently that there are simply no more treatment options for Aleem. He was on maintenance chemo for a short while, which was given purely to extend the time he has with his family, but even the maintenance chemo has now been stopped, as it serves no purpose anymore, and could now be harmful.

Aleem lives with his mommy (who had to give up her job to look after Aleem) and his older sister Kami at Kaneez’s elderly Parents’ home. Things have been very difficult for this family and The Little Fighters Cancer Trust has been offering whatever assistance we could such as food, clothing, bedding, and other practical needs since 7 October 2016.

Aleem was friends with another Little Fighter who lost his Fight last year, but who, before he died got his greatest wish and was able to visit Durban and have a very special interaction with the dolphins at Ushaka Marine World. Aleem saw the photographs, and has been talking about the dolphins for months!

Last week LFCT received a letter from Aleem’s Oncologist, positive about this travel and clearing him medically for the trip!

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Should Junk Food Adverts be Banned?


For the first time in history, there are more obese individuals in the world than underweight people. Both are symptoms of malnutrition, part of a global food system geared towards profits.

Activists are calling for a radical shift in the entire food system, including a total ban on junk food advertising. Is it possible and will it make a difference?

Consuming junk-food, especially sugary carbonated drinks, is “effectively poisoning your body”, according to Andrew Bennie, a food sovereignty activist and researcher, based at the University of the Witwatersrand. “So why are people allowed to advertise the consumption of poison, really?” he asks.

Last year, the United Nations called on all governments to outlaw the advertising of junk food to children saying that these “commercial messages have the potential to shape children’s long term consumer and financial behaviour, and they are growing in number and reach”.

In South Africa, the Advertising Code of Practice was amended in 2008 to limit the marketing of unhealthy foods to children under the age of 12, but this has not yet happened – a National Department of Health-led policy to increase this to all school-going age children has been stalled for several years.

See our previous articles; Link between Blood Sugar & Brain Cancer Found and Does Cancer Have a Sweet Tooth? for more information about sugar and cancer…

 

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✨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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