Benson’s Battle

Benson Ngechu is a quiet second grader, a good student who likes reading story books and playing soccer. He is now fighting for his life in a battle with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

Benson Handcraft

Benson in 2010, showing the handcraft he made

Benson is undergoing chemotherapy treatments at Kenyatta National Hospital. The total cost will be over $3000 USD.

We could use your help to pay for these life-saving treatments. If you would like to help, please click here and be sure to select “Benson Ngechu Cancer Fund”.

Up until the past Fall, Benson’s story was nearly identical to dozens of other Tenderfeet kids.

When he was very little, his father abandoned the family. Benson and his brother were raised by a single, HIV-positive, mother in the Kibera slum.

The family was driven out of Kibera during the post-election riots of early 2008 when he was only four years old. They lost everything and resettled (with Tenderfeet help) in the Riruta area.

As Tenderfeet also relocated to that area, he continued attending the school. Without Tenderfeet, he would not be able to go to school at all.

His life experiences up to a few months ago have been filled with unbelievable struggles, but sadly it is a story similar to so many Tenderfeet students.

A photo taken of Benson when the mass was becoming more noticeable

A photo taken of Benson when the mass on his neck was becoming more noticeable

However, as mentioned above, an additional challenge for Benson surfaced last Fall.

A swelling was noticed on his neck, and the initial diagnosis at the local clinic was that he had goiter (enlarged thyroid gland). Because of the size of the mass, he was eventually scheduled to have surgery.

Unfortunately, a series of major administrative problems at the hospital caused numerous delays.

Right before his goiter was going to be taken care of, a biopsy was taken which established that his problem was, in fact, Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

This is a cancer in the lymph nodes and a treatment of ten chemotherapy doses was prescribed.

For virtually all poor kids in Kenya, without outside financial assistance, this would likely be a death sentence because the treatments are $250 USD per dose (over and above all the associated tests and medical expenses).

However, thanks to the Tenderfeet emergency reserves made possible through your generous support, we have been able to initiate the treatments.

So far Benson has received four doses. The doctors have had to spread the doses out more than initially planned because Benson is so weak.

Nevertheless, he is a tough survivor, having grown up in the slums and faced adversity from day one of his life.

We are praying daily for strength and healing. We would be grateful for your thoughts and prayers.

Also, any assistance you could provide to help pay for the treatments would be deeply appreciated. You can help by clicking here and selecting “Benson Ngechu Cancer Fund”.

Benson at the hospital

Benson at the hospital, made possible through Tenderfeet donations

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