On 7 January 2010 Colby was taken to hospital with severe stomach pain. A few days later he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.
Colby’s mum Kim recalls, “A few days and several tests later, the oncologist advised us he was 99% sure that Colby had leukaemia. A few more tests and the 1% was ruled out. In an instant, our lives were changed forever.
His immune system was so compromised by the intensive chemotherapy he received that he developed serious complications which, in turn, led to a condition affecting his bones. Colby hasn’t been able to stand or walk since May 2010.
He has endured 505 consecutive days in hospital, many of these in isolation. Although Colby finished chemotherapy in November 2012, he still faces months of physiotherapy, more testing, surgeries and follow up treatment”, explains Kim.
“I don’t think anyone can fully understand the impact or importance of what Redkite does until they are faced with their own child’s diagnosis. It is a frightening and confusing time."
"When Colby was first admitted to hospital we were introduced to our Redkite Social Worker who ensured we received a Redkite “Red Bag”, filled with the things we needed right away, like a teddy bear for Colby and key information for us.
If it were not for Redkite’s Music Therapist, filling his days with song and laughter, I honestly don’t know how Colby would have made it through the dark days of hospitalisation.
Being away from home and unable to work for 20 months put a huge strain on our family finances. The bills kept flooding in. Redkite helped us pay some of these which alleviated our stress and gave us precious time to spend with all of our kids.
Colby’s missed nearly three years of schooling, and will need a great deal of support to catch up with his peers. We know we can call on Redkite to help us secure tutoring, and I know that I can pick up the phone and ring the Redkite support team when I need to. They understand what we’re going through."
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