Home News Gratitude Goes a Long Way – Inspiring Other Fundraising Initiatives

Gratitude Goes a Long Way – Inspiring Other Fundraising Initiatives

by Thaabit Kamaar


South Africa – Motivated by the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA and the various initiatives of the CHOC Cows, Fatima Gardee is actively raising funds to support CHOC’s mission of assisting children and teenagers diagnosed with cancer. This effort is also a heartfelt tribute to her late best friend and brother, Yusuf Gardee.

CHOC advocates for and supports the affected children and extends comprehensive support programs to their families, addressing their various needs.

Fatima’s commitment to fundraising for CHOC is deeply rooted in her personal experience with her elder brother, who battled Acute Myeloid Leukaemia, a form of blood and bone marrow cancer.

In an interview with Salaamedia, Fatima shared her childhood feelings of helplessness when, at the age of seven, she couldn’t provide the needed bone marrow for Yusuf’s transplant, unlike their other sibling, who was a perfect match. This sense of disappointment lingered into her adulthood.

Driven to make a positive impact, Fatima has transformed her emotional journey into a mission of helping recovering cancer patients and their families. She draws inspiration from Yusuf’s memory and achievements as a primary source of motivation for her philanthropic initiatives.

“That’s what gave me motivation over the years to give back to CHOC and the Cows, who honestly were such a motivation at the time. They really helped us out.”

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The Power of Supporting Cancer Patients and Their Families

Facing a family member’s cancer diagnosis or any other illness can be an incredibly emotional, stressful, and challenging time for anyone. Frequently, individuals tend to withdraw from others, believing they are navigating the ordeal in solitude.

Contrary to this perception, that is never the reality. There are always people, whether undergoing similar experiences or not, who are willing to offer help and support wherever they can.

While support, compassion, and love may not ultimately cure the individual in question, they can make the burden more manageable. Reflecting on this challenging period, Fatima mentioned that recovery becomes more navigable by embracing positive thinking, maintaining faith, avoiding dwelling on the past, and, most importantly, recognising that one is not alone in one’s struggles.

“We just looked at it in a positive light, and everything happens for a reason. Allah put this into our life as a test, and we all dealt with it well, now look where we are. I’m just trying to help CHOC and give back.”

In the recovery journey of Fatima’s family, CHOC played a significant role in providing support to her family and other patients and their families. Through this support, she emphasised that it helped alleviate their challenges, making them feel more at ease given the circumstances.

“Even if you don’t know these patients and even if you don’t know some of these families, for them (CHOC) to take out from their own heart to do something like this was beautiful.”

Due to this cause, Fatima and her family have organised numerous fundraisers for the organisation, aiming to enable them to assist others just as they were supported. Consequently, she urges and implores individuals to back and donate to this organisation due to the commendable and selfless efforts it consistently undertakes.

“I really want to emphasise here that CHOC was such a vital and important part of our journey. Go to CHOC, donate and help them because if you are helping them, essentially, they’re helping so many other people.”

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