Help Nova Mkhupela Walk
I am an art teacher from Arlington, Virginia. In the summer of 2017 I traveled with my husband, Peter Boone to Lilongwe, Malawi to teach art to children with disabilities. Peter was working on an agricultural development project funded by USAID. I worked with a group of teachers at Sandi Thandizi School. At this school I met Nova Mkhupela, the son of Ekari and Mercy Mkhupela. Ekari is a financial and administrative manager for the USAID project.
At Sandi Thandizi School, I worked with Nova every afternoon for two weeks. Nova had difficulty talking and walking and holding a brush or pencil. Despite these difficulties, Nova was very motivated to work on creating art. His interest in art and his determination were very powerful and inspiring.
Nova is six years old now. He has Cerebral Palsy, a condition that resulted from a lack of oxygen during his birth. Over the past year I have kept in touch with Nova and his family. Nova has excelled at his schoolwork, but has been limited by his inability to speak clearly and to walk and join in activities with other children.
As Nova has grown over the past year, it has become evident to his family that he needs more sophisticated medical help and physical therapy than the Malawi medical system has to offer. Nova’s parents have advocated strongly for him, and have been able to get Ekari’s health care insurance company to agree to pay for the six weeks of treatment and physical therapy at a first class pediatric clinic. This clinic (Rainbow Children’s Hospital in Bengaluru, India https://www.rainbowhospitals.in/ ) was identified by Nova’s health insurance company as the most suitable, and cost effective solution to Nova’s medical challenges.
Nova’s health insurance policy will pay approximately $ US 12,000 for a diagnosis, and tailored physical and speech therapy sessions for a period of 6 weeks beginning October 10, 2018. This is wonderful news, but it still leaves Nova’s parents with the costs of travel, lodging, and food for six weeks in India. Peter and I are hoping that you will help this wonderful family help their remarkable son to walk and talk clearly.
Nova, Ekari and Mercy now need to raise funds to cover their costs for three round-trip plane tickets from Malawi to India, and room and board for their family for six weeks from October 10 to November 24, 2018. The total costs of air fare, hotel, food, and local transportation for six weeks in India are estimated to be $ US 10,000.
Ekari and Mercy tell me that, “Seeing Nova on his feet will be the most exciting thing!” This is Nova’s current greatest goal. His most painful and recurring question is “Dad, why can’t I walk and run around like my friends?” With this treatment, everyone’s hope is that Nova will be able to walk and run around with his friends.
Peter and I are hoping that you will contribute to this fund very soon as Nova’s parents have been given October 10th as the start of the treatment. They need to make their plans very soon. Without your support, Nova and his family will not be able to able to make the trip to India and receive the medical attention that Nova needs to dramatically improve the quality of his life.
Peter and I appreciate your contribution to Nova’s progress. In this “Go Fund Me” page we will provide regular updates on Nova’s health progress, how the money raised has been spent, and its impact on Nova’s development!
Thank you so much for your support!
DonationsSee top donations
- Sandeep Shamasunder
- John Holtzman
- Nicholas Eberstadt
- Dragana Stojkovic
- Claire Hark
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
In the rare case something isn’t right, we will work with you to determine if misuse occurred. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more