I am presently a teacher, author, blogger and public speaker, and more importantly a father to twin boys and partner to Helen. I was recently diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis for which there is presently no drug treatment in the UK.
The only option for me is to undergo HSCT: "Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is an intense chemotherapy treatment for MS. It aims to stop the damage MS causes by wiping out and then regrowing your immune system, using your stem cells."
Basically, I want to crtl, alt +del my immune system.
As fun as this sounds, it is not without its massive risks. But you gotta do what you gotta do. Something's got to keep allowing me to cultivate these massive mutton chops.
Successful treatment means that the MS symptoms will stop progressing, which is why it is important to get it done as soon as possible. This will allow me to continue working and continue contributing to society in the same way. There are several options for doing this, and the most likely is to do it privately in, most probably, Moscow, at some considerable expense. This fundraising is to contribute to the treatment and recovery expenses. It is, however, available on the NHS at one hospital in London, but there are many hoops to jump through and it is unlikely I will qualify, and if I do, it will not be for the best part of a year or so. Therefore, I am looking to get this treatment as soon as possible. Look, I've done a fun disembodied head video to accompany this: https://youtu.be/OU86vVAPCxA
The fundraising will fund treatment that will require inpatient chemotherapy and isolation in Moscow for 30 days, with all the drugs and whatnot that goes with this. If the pound doesn't crash post-Brexit (ha!), this treatment should cost around £40,000, but there are many more costs on top of this (travel, visas, etc.). I am looking to create a few events locally, so keep your eyes peeled.
STOP PRESS. I have been booked on the treatment course in Russia in March and so time is certainly of the essence! This is fabulous news as I will not be waiting for perhaps a year or so to be told that I won't be accepted on the NHS. I would love to go on the NHS (though exceptionally unlikely in any event) but I can't turn down the opportunity of getting my treatment as soon as possible so that my symptoms are halted as early as possible.
For more information on the sort of needs for people seeking this treatment, AIMS are a new MS charity with a focus on HSCT - find out more here: https://www.facebook.com/pg/aimscharity.org/about/?ref=page_internal
They look to be an awesome charity, helping people in situations similar to my own.
Life throws up some challenges. Sometimes you gotta meet them head-on.
Bear in mind that GoFundMe by default ask for a cut/tip - you can change this and set it to £0 - don't let it put you off!