Wednesday, 6 August 2014

"Save Me From Death" -OAU Student Cries

An extraordinary ambition of a 26-year-old designer and graduate of Sociology from Obafemi Awolowo University to export made-in-Nigeria designs abroad is threatened by kidney disease. Solomon Elusoji writes that with N9 million for a kidney transplant, that dream will become a reality

Yomade Balogun is just 26 years old, but already in a tug of war with Death. Although she’s been brave, even heroic – for being on the battleground with Death for eight years – her energy seems to be waning. As the clock’s arms move – tick tock, tick tock – Death seems to be winning. 

And once again, Nigeria is on the verge of losing one of its young minds that has shown astute leadership skills – a trait the country needs desperately for her great future.

Balogun, an indigene of Ondo State, is a graduate of the Obafemi Awolowo University (Sociology and Anthropology).
She is equally a chartered Personnel Manager after sitting for and passing the qualifying exams of the Chattered Institute of Personnel Management.

Balogun was deployed to serve the country in Gombe State during the 2010 Batch C NYSC scheme and she served with pride.
Shortly after her service year, she followed her dream to have a world-class clothing label and to become a top employer of labour in the country.

So her quest for creativity, innovation and quality delivery propelled the young Balogun to start the company called Adornare Clothing and Accessories, a company which has been providing clothing and organising training to empower young Nigerians.

Her desire to provide out-of-the-box products led her to start the “Made Erratic (ME)” label. The ME label was created to make bespoke wears for all occasions.

Starting with just raw talent, some formal training and a great amount of passion, Balogun was able to channel her energy to create an opportunity that other young people can benefit from.
But her dream to run a world-class clothing and accessories company may appear to be hitting the wall as Balogun is currently hospitalised, battling a kidney disease.

Many of the people that have met the ever smiling lady before she was hospitalised would not believe that she has been fighting a prolonged battle of her life since 2006.

On that day when fate struck her this fatal blow, she woke up in her hostel on the university campus and was rushed to the health centre. Her body swelled and she was held in the cold embrace of fear. She was later diagnosed of Alderman (a medical condition that is characterised by body swelling).

She was just in her second year in the university, but was told that she had very high cholesterol. The information came to her as a rude shock but for the next two years of her life, Balogun was on medications. Still, she graduated with distinctions.
In 2008, she became better and life appeared to be squeezing her lemons into lemonades. But after her national youth service program in 2011, she had a major health crisis that threatened to end her dreams. But she fought back to stay alive. She was rushed to the Gbagada General Hospital in Lagos, where she was diagnosed with kidney infection.
Distressed by the diagnosis, the strong-willed Balogun didn’t allow the kidney infection to stop her from chasing after her dream. She took her medications, fought the disease and made efforts to be a blessing to all those around her.

But in 2012, despite her valiant efforts to stay strong, the disease escalated to stage four. And in search of a better treatment, Balogun was taken to the Ekiti State Hospital where she continued the battle of her life.

After an entire month in bed, she started to show signs of recovery. But the cost of transport and the difficulty associated with travelling from Lagos to Ekiti for hospital visits necessitated a transfer to the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH).

So the fight continued and the doctors in LUTH struggled to manage the disease. But soon, another tragedy struck. The doctors at LUTH went on strike. She was then taken to Gbagada General Hospital. While at the hospital, she went through a series of test and treatment after which she was advised to undergo a kidney transplant immediately, if she wanted to stay alive.

According to one of her schoolmates back at OAU, Peter Okolie, “Yomade has always dedicated herself to being a blessing to those around her.”

In the last eight years, she has been in and out of hospitals and has had to take more medications than most people would take all through their life.

Despite all these, Balogun continues to wear a smile and believes that the fight is not over until she wins over the disease.
Currently, she is presently undergoing dialysis twice a week at the Gbagada General Hospital and Clinix Health Care, under the supervision of Dr Busari with hospital no 210770. The cost of the bi-weekly dialysis is very heavy and the dialysis is not a permanent treatment for the disease.

Tragically, Balogun lost her father to an auto-accident on the 20th of March 1992 (22 years ago) and the responsibility for her medical bills and care has been handled only by her mother.

As it stands, the recommend treatment is a kidney transplant. The cost projection for the kidney transplant according to St Nicholas Hospital is about N9 million, which her mother, a civil servant with Somolu-Bariga Local Government in Lagos State cannot afford.
All those that have met Balogun would attest to the fact that she is a promising young lady that is a beacon of hope to this generation.

She has always put the interest of others before her own. She has always looked at the best in other people and she has a tender compassionate heart. Even through her health challenges she has always found opportunities to be a blessing to those around her. “Posterity would hold us accountable if we allow her light to go out simply because we chose to fold our hands when we could lend a helping hand,” said Okolie.

“Balogun needs N9 million for a kidney transplant, Please kindly make a donation to any of the accounts stated below – Balogun Yomade Yewande: Diamond bank: 0041932927, Diamond bank: 0051136447 (dollar account) , Guaranty Trust Bank: 0130520176, Zenith Bank: 2084974783.

“Nothing is too small, every assistance is appreciated. I want to live to fulfil my dream. Now, I need well-meaning Nigerians to save me from dying,’ Balogun said, expressing faith in her countrymen.

“Balogun Yomade needs N9 million for the kidney transplant, if she must stay alive to be a blessing to this generation. She’s is an extremely nice person. Despite the fact that she’s on a sick bed, she keeps encouraging us and telling us she would not die. If she dies without help, it will send a wrong signal to the rest of the world about us as a country,” said Balogun Adebimpe, her sister.
For further information Balogun can be reached through her sister, Adebimpe on 08052562404 or 08034228346.

Source: This Day 
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