At the age of 15, one’s life should be attending school, participating in extracurricular activities, and having fun with friends. However, in his teenage year, the 15-year-old boy from Kuala Lumpur is fighting against leukaemia.
Tay Jia Chen was an energetic and active teenager. He loved sports and cooking, and his life was busy yet exciting. However, a sudden illness completely disrupted the original living of him and his family.
【His whole body developed with swollen granules without warning. After going to the hospital for examination, the doctor told him he should not wait any longer and needed to admit to the hospital for immediate chemotherapy】
Jia Chen is a 15-year-old boy. He attended secondary school in Kuala Lumpur. He was active in extracurricular activities and loved badminton, swimming, baking and cooking. Unexpectedly, his neck, leg, ears and entire body developed granules around November last year. His family brought him to the clinic, and the doctor suspected he was heaty. However, his condition did not improve after taking medicine for a week, and the granules became larger.
He said that the granules and the swollen parts did not make him feel pain or itching at that time, except when he started pressing it. His 52-year-old father, felt his son might have other problems, so he brought him to a hospital for examination. The doctor later diagnosed him with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (T-Cell ALL). His condition was critical, and he had to undergo treatment at the hospital as soon as possible.
After the initial chemotherapy, the swollen granules on his body gradually became tinier, but he started to have rash-like, sometimes itchy granules. The doctor explained that the toxicity in his body was shown on his skin after treatment. After chemotherapy, Jia Chen also experienced side effects such as headache, dizziness, fatigue and vomiting. His body weight dropped from 52kg to 49kg in a week.
【He doesn’t have the strength to walk or change clothes. Going out to exercise or attending school with his friends has become an impossible task for him】
Jia Chen is now very weak. He will experience shortness of breath when walking, bathing, and changing clothes. He can never play badminton or bake like he used to.
During an interview, he mentioned he likes science subjects more than arts subjects and is especially interested in computer studies. However, the doctor informed him that he could not continue attending school for the next two years, so he had to self-learn at home and in the hospital.
As his family can’t afford the hospitalisation expenses, he has to commute between home and the hospital. During his weekly chemotherapy session, he will stay temporarily at the hospital’s hostel for outstation patients. He is also not allowed to go to crowded places due to weak immunity to reduce the possibility of bacterial infection.
【To take care of the sick child, his single dad can’t go to work and has no income. And now, he is worried about the expenses for his son’s chemotherapy treatment】
Jia Chen’s father and his wife divorced when he was three, and the parents did not contact each other since then. While living in Tangkak, Johor, the father helped out at a fried chicken stall, but he lost his job after the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. He later took up part-time jobs and earned a few hundred ringgit a month. The father’s life is stretched, so he sends Jia Chen to his sister when Jia Chen is seven.
His father went from Johor to Kuala Lumpur to care for his son in November last year. Still, he could not go out to work, so he could only get temporary financial relief from his brother and sister, including paying the rent and their living expenses in Kuala Lumpur. Therefore, the father cannot afford the medical costs of RM35,000.
Although he suffered a lot from the illness, Jia Chen knew that his treatment expenses were high, and his family did not have a stable income, so he once asked his family to stop his treatment. He would rather endure the physical discomfort than put his father in great financial difficulties.
After learning about the medical and family conditions, One Hope Charity conducted a home visit. After reviewing the case, One Hope Charity decided to assist Jia Chen and his father to raise RM35,000 for Jia Chen’s treatment, with the hope that the 15-year-old boy can get his treatment with peace of mind, at the same time to reduce the financial burden of the family.
Jia Chen and his family agreed to fully authorise One Hope Charity to take charge of the fundraising and collect donations from well-wishers on their behalf. Call our hotline at 04-539 9212, 016-419 2192, 019-232 2192 or 018-911 4192 if you have questions.