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Helping a 3-Year-Old Battle Sickle Cell


Jacksonville, FL

Mom Dellesha, donor Makira, and stem cell recipient Kayali

Dellesha is the proud mother of five beautiful children. Her 3-year-old, Kayali, was diagnosed with sickle cell anemia at birth.

Kayali needed a bone marrow transplant. All of her siblings were tested and 11-year-old Makira, the oldest (and the bravest), was considered the best candidate to donate bone marrow.

But the transplant center was 160 miles away.

Dellesha uprooted her family to be closer to the transplant center. She could not work during months of treatment, so she cut expenses by ending their lease and putting everything into storage.

Once the bone marrow transplant was scheduled, a social worker from the hospital registered Kayali’s family for support.

The Icla Cares program removed the family’s barriers with a grant for gas, groceries, and some of that storage during Kayali’s treatment and transplant.

Fortunately, the transplant was a success. 

Dellesha is grateful and has high hopes for their future.

She considers the Icla da Silva Foundation to be like family. While she was thankful to receive funds, she said she was very grateful for our concern. “I received so many texts, always asking how I was doing, how Kayali was. The Foundation is like family.

Dellesha doesn’t like talking about what they went through, but she has heartfelt words for other patient families going through the same challenge:

Have faith, because that’s what you’re going to need. Don’t give up Hope.”

You can help us support more patient families like Dellesha and her daughter. Even a small donation will help patients prepare for treatment with faith and hope.



Written by: Bret Itskowitch

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