I first met Sana while visiting a free clinic run by a retired Monk in Koh Kong. Her condition was frightning! She had a huge tumor growing on the right side of her face. Her family had sold their home and motor bike to try to get care for her. The hospitals told them they had too little money and that there was no hope. I told the family I would try to help. A Doctor friend of mine suggested I take her immediately to the Soviet Friendship Hospital in Phnom Penh as he had trained doctors there and, so, had friends working there.
When we arrived things looked bleak. There was no free care and the doctors were shocked at her condition. We did, however, have enough money to get her an MRI. The results showed that the cancer was now entering her brain! I posted some photos and the newspapers picked up on it and did a short story.
Sana was not given a room, but was placed on a mat on the second floor porch with her mom and dad. The next day, I arrived at the hospital and many of my friends were already there. When I went to see the doctor, he told me he had good news! It seemed that the story was noticed by the family of Hun Sen and that they would now pay all hospital costs providing I supported the family through my organization Kids at Risk Cambodia. That day, Sana was moved into a semi-private room and doctors did many tests.
Just a few days after, Red LyLa and her mom showed up after seeing the story in the papers. Red seemed to have much the same condition but not quite as bad. Once again, her bills were paid if Kids at Risk Cambodia would support the family during the long treatment time. Both children are doing very well, but their treatments continue. It has been a strain on Kids at Risk Cambodia, as we are still a small organization. But, thanks to much generosity, we managed to care for the children and their families and provided bus tickets to the families for their many trips home and back to the hospital.