Charity. It can feel like a dirty word sometimes.
I remember when we had a house fire back in 2007, there was talk of a collection for our little family. A charity event our friends and family began to call it.
It didn’t sit well with us; we felt uncomfortable.
For a brief period we had to rely on local charities in order to help us move on with our lives.
While we gladly give to charities, it’s a very different feeling when you’re the one who needs the charity.
When Ethan was diagnosed in 2008, we organised a huge charity drive. It was so much easier to ask people for help; as this wasn’t directly for us or Ethan, it was for research into hunter Syndrome.
These days there are so many ways to ask for financial help; but that still doesn’t make it easy.
There is nothing ‘easy’ about having to ask for help, especially if the help you need is for your son, family member or even yourself.
I have looked up many ‘Go Fund Me’s’ and while many would break your heart there are others that leave you with a bad taste in your mouth.
I have come across ‘Go Fund Me’s’ for tattoos, a holiday, a kids free break, a house make over (not a house adaption), the list goes on.
These ‘Go Fund Me’s’ shadow over the ones that really are genuine and have used ‘Go Fund Me’ out of desperation not for entertainment to see what they can get for free.
In my world, there are many friends of mine who have no choice but to set up a ‘Go Fund Me’.
Having a child with such severe needs isn’t cheap. Grants aren’t easily received and often don’t cover enough.
Then there are the families who have terminally ill children who are trying their best to do as much as they can in the short life that their kiddies will have.
They may need an accessible home, car or even medical equipment which can be deemed as a ‘luxury’ to our wonderful understanding government.
What the heck could possibly be deemed as a ‘luxury’ when referring to equipment?
A beach buggy, a sensory room, hoists rails to run within the home along the ceiling, a buggy which climbs the stairs, a comfortable seat which reclines and is built around the person’s needs, a car which enables you to bring your whole family out…
There is no grant to help.
There is only charity.
Kindness of strangers and now, ‘Go Fund Me’s’.
‘Go Fund Me’s’ are amazing when used correctly and honestly.
On this International Day of Charity; I ask you to consider the families, the families all over the world trying their best to raise funds in order for them to live a life they could never have foreseen.
These families are in need.
These families don’t want to ask for charity, but have little choice, pride isn’t something they can let get in the way.
They have to fight for everything that their child needs, needs not wants. Needs.
If you have any money spare please consider donating to these types of ‘Go Fund Me’s’ ; if you don’t have anything spare please share the links, ask your friends to do the same.
This was originally published on Firefly