Baby stuck in Africa needs transplant
Oct 6, 2013 / 7:15 am
Aurora is just three-months-old but already she needs a life-saving transplant.
When the daughter of Kelowna resident Nicole Arnt and her South African husband Harold Blomerus was born, she suffered a superior mesenteric artery clot, which destroyed her small intestine.
The Blomerus family has been living in South Africa since July 2012, where this type of transplant is not performed.
“It’s not that we prefer to come to Canada, it’s that they do not perform a small intestine transplant anywhere in this country and Canada is our only option,” said Nicole.
Aurora will have a small bowel transplant at Toronto's Sick Kids Hospital under the care of Dr. Paul Wales, if they can raise the money.
She is not stable enough to take a commercial flight and air ambulance costs could run as high as $150,000. Now they are desperately trying to raise the funds for the flight.
“So far we are up just over $10,000," said Nicole. "The quicker we can get her transplant, the better for her long term health.”
Nicole has been told that without the transplant, Auroras chances of seeing her 5th birthday are only 20 per cent.
Unable to work in South Africa, Nicole spends her time trying to promote their fundraising page, writing to airlines for quotes and talking to friends who are planning fundraisers.
Without help, Nicole, who was born in Vernon, but lived in Kelowna most of her life, does not think they will be able to earn the money they need to get their daughter back to Canada and pay moving expenses.
“It’s been a hard adjustment for someone who was a full time nurse for 17 years,” said Nicole. “This has put severe financial strain on us. I am very much looking forward to working again and letting Harold be the stay-at-home dad for the year he isn’t allowed to work in Canada. He can be at the hospital with Aurora while I earn the money.”
“It’s been a long, hard road, starting with thinking she was going to die at birth. But thankfully Aurora is a little fighter and has pulled through her troubles. We are confident she is strong enough to thrive through the transplant as well; we just need to get her there.”
Read more Kelowna News
City of Kelowna
Kelowna Discussion Forum
Kelowna's Cultural District
Kelowna Road Closures
William R. Bennett Bridge
Central Okanagan Regional District
District of Peachland
District of Lake Country
School District 23
Okanagan Regional Library
- Budget approval means tax increase Dec 12
- Christmas market, art show and concert Dec 12
- "One Valley, One Water" Dec 12
- Students helping students 4,100km away Dec 12
- Bus light tour - get your tickets Dec 12
- Charged with running over paper carrier Dec 12
- Budget 2014 - day long coverage Dec 12
- Fewer rentals available Dec 12
- Protecting your gifts Dec 12
- Union sends final package to FortisBC Dec 12