Monday, May 17, 2021

An overwhelming response to Abian Ntshabele’s plea

After what has been perhaps Botswana’s biggest ever fundraising campaign to help a fellow Motswana in dire need of medical assistance, Team Abbie managed to raise more than the estimated 500 000 Pula required for her operation.

By Friday January 23, 2015, the team had raised well over the initial target. Abian’s incredibly poignant story of survival has awoken the dying spirit of compassion that Batswana had been known for.

It is not often that the nation gets so united in selflessly carrying out an act of compassion. Abian’s is a story of hope where there seems to be none; a story of courage in the mist of tragedy; a story of survival in a battle few have won. It is also a story of love – The kind of love that has united a nation almost divided by politics.

For her mother, Tiny Ntshabele, there would be no greater gift than her daughter’s full recovery and return to normal life. Like any loving parent, she would love to see her daughter off to school again, graduate and get a job. She would love to see her walk down the aisle and see her grow old.

She would love for Abian to outlive her. And more importantly she would love to see her smile again. Not a contrived smile of courage and hope- she knows her daughter is way too young for that. The smile she would want to see on her daughter’s beautiful face is that of pure contentment – when there would be no more medical hurdles to overcome.

Tiny’s appeal for financial assistance that began in 2014 has finally yielded the results. “Monday the 19th January, 2015 marks four weeks of Abbie’s public appeal, and boy we have got news for you,” said a statement from Lorraine Lionheart, one of the commanders of the Please Help Abbie Get Well campaign.

“This week the campaign reached its highest point yet and every single fundraising activity /event was successful.” She said the achievement was by no means the work of magic. “It is hard work, faith and hope, and the grace of God. What Abbie’s army has achieved is astonishing especially given that this campaign was conducted with minimal resources,” Lionheart said. She said because of the urgency of Abian’s case they had to move fast. “We didn’t have the luxury of time.” She said the appeal had been an inspiration to everyone and meant different things to different people. “To some of us it has also been an exhilarating rollercoaster and I know in my heart that everything we put into this has been worth it, and most importantly, God has rewarded us for it with the privilege of having good health which we usually take for granted,” Lionheart said.

Abian was diagnosed with Metastatic Immature Teratoma, a rare form of ovarian cancer in January, 2014. The fundraising still continues to help cover any costs that may follow her operation and those willing to help can donate to: Abian Ntshabele FNB acc # 62263884291 main branch Botswana. UK bank account details HSBC Bank, Acc 42013940, sort code 400917- Tiny Lerato Ntshabele.

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