COVID19: Parents out of work & I'm chronically ill

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My background:

I am a university student with a chronic illness called arthritis, with no known cause and no cure. Otherwise known as autoimmune disease, chronic disability, or invisible disability. It is an immune system disease, therefore I am at high risk of dying from COVID-19 if I catch it. Not to mention loosing a decade of medication progress and my hard-fought independence. I cannot afford to be dependent and bedridden again or risk homelessness.

My story:

I live with my parents and little brother. My family of 4 is a paycheck to paycheck family, with most of the money going toward my medical fees. Since the week of March 15, both of my parents have been dismissed from work, with no foreseeable future of going back anytime soon due to the coronavirus, lock-down, and no customers at their small place of employment. That means we do not have enough money coming into the family to sustain us past 1 more month. 

The income from this past month and my leftover student loan is just enough for 1 month of rent. If we are lucky, our house owner may let us delay rent. If we are unlucky, we may be evicted, with the house owner using the loopholes in the current eviction laws, such as owner move-in. The owner already moved in upstairs. We are only renting part of the bottom half. It is stressful and scary to live without the security of a permanent place. Even if rent is delayed, we still have no source of income to pay all the debt that will pile up. 

My parents are old, in their 50s/60s with no English skills. With the city on lock-down, it is hard to find a job that will hire them and not risk their health. With no work, my parent’s boss also suspended our family insurance that my parents bought through their work. The insurance took up 30% of my family’s paycheck, with a high deductible around $9,000 - $12,000 USD. Now, we have no insurance, but I still have medical fees to pay. Arthritis is a chronic disease with daily medication and quarterly checkups. My aunt helped us look at other insurance options and with my parent’s income, it came out to $700 per person. That is $2800 for my family of 4. That is impossible for us to buy, let alone possible for just me. My parent’s paychecks do not even hit the $2000 mark. I am unsure what to do here. Last time when I had no insurance, my medication was ~$1625 for 3 months. With insurance, it came down to between $24 - $140.

I am a low-skilled, essential part time worker for one of the big corporations that is helping the world through this crisis at the moment with their large network. I receive zero benefits with my low position. There is a minimum amount of shifts I need to complete to stay hired, even during this crisis. My work has a lot of interactions with other people, and since I live in a hot-spot of COVID-19 outbreaks, I am afraid of going to work due to my non-existent immune system as described above. Even so, we need some money, so I signed up for a few shifts just to sustain us a little bit more. My parents are livid that I’m going to work. But what choice do I have? We need to survive. We have bills to pay and medication that I cannot just stop taking or there will be a lash out in my arthritis symptoms and medicine side effects.

How your contribution will help:

Your contribution will go toward my family’s monthly rent, followed by daily necessities such as food and water, and lastly, my medical insurance and medical bills.

Our main concern is rent for the next 2-3 months during this pandemic. We are looking at $2000/month in rent and utilities for 4 people. We live in an expensive city, but we’re renting in one of the poorest neighbors. Food, water, daily necessities, internet bill for online school, and medical fees will follow afterwards which is estimated to be about $700-900/month.  However, since we do not have health insurance right now, that number can jump to $2000-3000/month depending on how much corporations want to charge my necessary medication.

What we are doing right now:

At the moment, we are filling out the EDD application for unemployment, but that will be a few weeks before it may be approved. I made this fundraiser in hopes of sustaining my family with emergency funds until we are able to stand back on our own two feet again. I do not expect this to be my sole source of income. I am already trying to sell any pre-own items from home through online platforms, but since we do not own anything fancy, it is a very low payout with a few dollars here and there.

My family has always been independent, especially my stubborn parents who shoulders all the financial and medical hardships on their own shoulders without asking for help from anyone or anything. They are the type who pays back grace with even more grace despite their own situation. This is the least I can do for them without them worrying to death about my health. 

Thank you for reading and helping out my family. 
Stay safe everyone.

Family Paypal account under my mother: 

My Cashapp: $catreux

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Organizer and beneficiary

Carmen Huang 
San Francisco, CA
Da Huang 
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