Zubiya is Fighting Cancer in Memory of her Grandfather

“My grandfather was diagnosed with cancer, and that’s why I feel it is my duty to support people with cancer.”

Zubiya Jafri is just 12 years old, but she’s already learned one of life’s hardest lessons, and is doing everything she can to make a difference. When her grandfather was diagnosed with cancer, Zubiya was too young to comprehend what was happening. But she knew what pain was, and seeing the pain in his eyes was unbearable for her.

“I couldn’t stop wondering why it had to be him,” says Zubiya “On occasions he had severe effects that I never understood and he was taken to hospital whilst I stood there unaware of the happenings. For his operation he had to go all the way to Lahore in his condition. Every day for him was a battle for his life.”

Despite the suffering and challenges, Zubiya recalls how strong her grandfather was till the very end. “The whole family knew that he couldn’t live forever. We knew that this life-threatening disease had daunting challenges ahead for him. But even realizing this fact, he seemed so satisfied with his life and continued to live it to the fullest.”

Zubiya’s grandfather battled with cancer for several years. Eventually his health couldn’t hold out against it, and he passed on. “When the day came, the very day that everyone dreaded, there was that one thought that lingered in my mind.” Zubiya recalls the moment her grief turned into a grave realization. “Why did he have to travel such a distance for an operation? Couldn’t it have been done at a local hospital? It finally hit me that there was no specialized cancer hospital in Karachi. It was a shock.”

“Coming to my senses, I decided to devote my time and effort to researching about cancer and hospitals. That’s when I came across Shaukat Khanum Hospital – A specialized hospital for cancer that was established with the purpose of providing cancer treatment to those who are unable to afford it.” Zubiya’s pain helped her to see that it wasn’t just her grandfather who had suffered needlessly in the absence of a local cancer hospital. There were many people in Karachi just like him, and there would be many more if something wasn’t done.

It was a revelation for Zubiya when she found out about Shaukat Khanum’s Karachi Hospital Appeal. Here was a charitable instating working to build a hospital in her very hometown! “It finally struck me that this was the time to do my part!” she says, “To start me off, I dedicated my birthday party to the cause and raised an astonishing amount. I then proceeded by doing a bake sale. In total I made £563.56 so far.”

Despite her age, Zubiya has dedicated herself to the cause whole heartedly. “I want to continue with my work and fundraising to reach a target that could help build a children’s ward or perhaps towards another way of saving people’s lives.”

Show Zubiya your support by donating to her fundraising efforts on her Justgiving Page.

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