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UPDATED: Family still needs help for mom to provide stay-at-home-care for “Haileybird’s” leukemia fight

Hailey Baranyai -from GOFUNDME.COM page

Hailey Baranyai -from GOFUNDME.COM page

\ By Gary Webb-Proctor \

An East York family did its best to make the most of Christmas with ten-year-old daughter Hailey, a Gledhill Junior Public School student who was diagnosed with leukemia on November 2.  But with the girl facing the prospect of two-and-a-half years of nearly daily treatments before being considered cured and requiring constant round-the-clock care, the family’s life has been turned upside down by the diagnosis.

Her mother, Patricia Baranyai, who has had to abandon her business of 27 years in order to provide the care Hailey needs, has turned to a campaign for help in paying the family’s bills, the school’s official Gledhill Guardian email newsletter reported as students began their Christmas break on Friday Dec. 22.

To make matters worse her father has also been ailing for the past year, has spent time in hospital himself and is not able to help financially, Ms. Baranyai says in her gofundme post.

Baranyai and Hailey must make frequent trips to the hospital for treatments that include four days a week of chemotherapy, a weekly spinal tap as part of ongoing diagnostic procedures and occasional blood transfusions when the girl’s red blood cell count gets low.  Hailey, who has been a happy, musical child (her nickname is “Haileybird”) all her life, must be constantly monitored and checked for fevers or other symptoms that her condition is worsening, her mom says.

Hailey with her Christmas 'baby' -COURTESY

Hailey with her Christmas ‘baby’ -COURTESY

That means she’s unable to continue with her business as a designer and creator of vintage-style jewelry.  “Working, while looking after Hailey and her older brother, is just not an option,” she says.

“This is the most difficult time we have faced and the intensity is almost unbearable at times.  We need help to sustain our family through the treatment.  If you have it in your heart to donate even a small amount… any amount, our family will benefit greatly and I will be more at ease to meet the costs of caring for Hailey in the way she needs.  In the way that I want to with all my heart.  I also ask that you keep Hailey in your heart and pray for her complete recovery and healing,” she writes.

“Hailey loves to sing and is always drawing or making crafts.  Since the diagnosis she has found much comfort in singing on the way to appointments and on the way home” and “is a girl that takes generosity much to heart, always expressing her gratitude when she says ‘I can’t believe that people care about me so much’ and ‘That’s so nice of her to do that even though she hardly knows me.’  She never takes things for granted and she makes sweet little sounds when you cuddle with her.

“Hailey is my hero, for she has faced and continues to face her fears daily.  Together, Hailey and I are facing fears and anxiety that, two months ago, we could not fathom having to face.  Hailey has grown much since November 2nd.  Much more than any ten-year-old should have to grow in such a short time.  She is strong and sweet and continues to amaze me with her generous and bright spirit,” Baranyai writes.

Hailey’s mom adds that it is her fervent hope that “when the sun shines a little brighter, we will pay forward our blessings by raising money for the Hospital for Sick Children and other families in need.”

As of this writing, the Healing For Hailey campaign has raised $8,005 of its $21,000 goal through 114 donations in nine days.

UPDATE on Fri. Dec. 29 at 9 a.m.:  another $1,214 has come in since the article was published but still a long way to go.  Hopefully they can at least get to the half-way mark before the holidays end.  UPDATE on Mon. January 01  at 8 p.m.:  The fund is now up to $9,589 –less than $1,000 to go to get to the half-way mark!  UPDATE on Friday, January 5 at noon: The total is now $9,889 so there’s just over $600 to go to half-way. UPDATE on Mon. Jan. 15 at 9 a.m.:  151 donors have now given a total of $10,219.  UPDATE on Fri. January 19 at 9 a.m.:  The total is now just over the half-way mark to the goal, with $10,594 raised from 156 people.


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