Valeria was born in the Belarusian town of Slutsk. She was a healthy baby weighing in at 3.2 kg and for the first couple of years grew and developed normally. When she was 2, Valeria contracted a bad throat infection that led to complications and in May of that year she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis.
Valeria spent most of the summer having treatment in her local hospital but it soon became obvious that she was having problems moving. She stopped using one leg and a swelling appeared over one of the joints. Valeria had injections into the joint which seemed to help but by Maythe next year her sight was failing as she developed cataracts in both eyes. Today, Valeria is being treated with an expensive medicine. Although there is no cure for her illness, the medicine should improve her condition . The family cannot afford this medication as Valeria's mother has left work to care for her daughter and her father's salary is not large. The Belarusian Children's Hospice (BCH) has launched a public campaign in Belarus to collect money for the drug Valeria needs and, of course, BCH provides its own services to the family free of charge. A public appeal via the internet is one of the fundraising methods that BCH frequently uses, particularly when children need expensive drugs or medical care that is beyond its own budget. The Belarusian public responds well to appeals for individual children. However, BCH continues to rely on Friends of the Belarusian Children's Hospice for help funding the things that do not catch the public imagination: basic staff salaries, diesel for the minibus, heating bills, repairs to buildings. By helping us with these necessary expenses, you are also helping us to care for Valeria and other children receiving palliative care.