Turning bitterness into blessing
Alcohol-dependent, volatile and sometimes violent, 32-year-old Subhash was estranged from his wife and children, although they still shared a home.
The care team MAI supports in Maharashtra, India trained young people in his community to make local people aware of signs and symptoms of cancer and what to do in response. After hearing from them, Subhash decided to have a lump in his mouth checked out.
Tests confirmed it was oral cancer. But no one was willing to support his treatment, and the cancer developed unchecked.
When the MAI-supported palliative care team first visited, he had a large, open wound in his mouth, and was feeling very low and isolated. His wife and children refused to communicate with him, or with the team coming faithfully to care for him.
But over time, Subhash began to share his regret at his past behaviour. This openness gave the team an opportunity to pray with both him and his family, who had been touched by the kindness and commitment shown their father.
They asked to be taught how to look after him. Over time their bitter, broken relationship began to heal.
Learning that Subhash was also estranged from his parents, who lived next door, the care team made contact and helped them to reconcile their differences.
Subhash died recently, surrounded by his family and a deep sense of peace.
Last year, your support helped give home-based care to 167 patients like Subhash. The team also hosted 132 cancer awareness meetings, reaching over 8,000 people with invaluable information about cancer causes, symptoms and treatment. A further 97 volunteers were trained in palliative home-based care and bereavement support.