On a parents forum in Facebook, I noticed regular posts that talked about childhood cancer awareness. The statistics shared were sometimes shocking. The deadly disease is on the rise, we all know that. But the fact that it does not spare little children is difficult to read through, specially when you are parent. Each post emphasized the need to overcome the notion, “It cannot happen to me” and let the light come in. Awareness does not hurt, ignorance does. 

I also noticed that these posts always came from one person. When someone is so driven for a cause, there is always a reason behind it. 

I traced the person to their Facebook profile and that is when I discovered the story of Asma Pasha, the very brave and determined mother of 11 year old Amaan Shah, who lost his fight against cancer in as little as a few months. The disease took Amaan away before much could be done.  He was diagnosed at a fairly late stage. Today the parents feel, had they been more aware they would have fought for Amaan a little differently. Nevertheless, I can sense from Asma’s emails that they fought for him ferociously. Unfortunately, they lost the battle. 

Devastating for a mother, a parent, to lose their own child. A 11 year old child who had no health issues previously whatsoever. 

Amaan’s story is on the website that his parents have started for him. They have started a foundation in his memory. The Amaan Shah Foundation For Child Cancer

This foundation is geared towards a simple goal of educating other parents and raising awareness. The foundation does that through Facebook, the website, numerous parent forums, educational talks at schools and distributing awareness brochures. A humble beginning to an important task. I must add that it has not been very long since Amaan made his last journey. Not long enough for Asma to heal. I ask Asma what she would say to other parents. Her advice is to shed the mindset that “It cannot happen to me”. Educate yourself regardless. It will help you fight your battle if you have to. But most importantly it will help you act on things you could do to prevent childhood cancer. 

We share this story with you today because being mothers, we know it must take Asma a lot of courage to go out into the world and do what she is doing. Her spirit of “I cannot let this happen to others” is overwhelming. Her resources are very limited but she is making the most of it. In her own words “Presently I just have emotions, dedication, commitment and some sources. I need a slow and steady head right direction.”

We salute her to have found her mission, her goal and a new meaning in life in the face of such adversities. 

If you can help Asma in any way – Designing/Creating content for her website, channeling her information better, improving her reach, providing her more resources for her cause, please email at amaanshahfoundation@gmail.com
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