Teen turns to Internet fundraising website to find needed support

Resident sets up gofundme page to raise funds for vehicle to get to medical appointments in Lower Mainland.

Kourtney Saviskoff and her dog LG.

An 18-year old Sicamous resident has turned to an Internet fundraising website to find the means of support to get to medical appointments in the Lower Mainland.

Kourtney Saviskoff’s GoFundMe page is titled Please help raise money for a car. Not a new car, just something that won’t need a lot of maintenance.

Saviskoff says she set up the page because she didn’t know of any other organizations or websites that provide financial support for people like herself living with Byler’s disease. She says she was diagnosed with Byler’s at seven months. The disease, referred to by medical professionals as progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis, is described as progressive, leading to liver failure and death in childhood without a liver transplant. Saviskoff said she had two liver transplants at age 9. Ongoing blood work and treatment, as well as visits with specialists in Vancouver, are now a regular part of Saviskoff’s life, as is relying on others for transportation – be it for medical appointments or trips to the grocery store – as neither she nor her partner has a vehicle and she, for medical reasons, is unable to drive.

“I haven’t heard of anything going on about donating for my type of disease or trying to help,” said Saviskoff. “I’ve heard for cancer and stuff, but that’s about it, and then I saw the (GoFundMe) page and thought maybe I’ll give this a try and see what happens.”

Saviskoff says her illness leaves her mentally and physically drained, jaundiced and struggling to maintain a healthy weight. She notes how since turning 18, there has been a dramatic difference to the way she is treated by the medical system.

“When I was in paediatrics before I turned 18, they would help me with everything that I needed,” said Saviskoff. “I called them, I’d say something was really wrong, and my doctor would admit me into hospital, find out what was wrong and help me deal with it. I was able to get my pills for my bipolar and everything. And here I’ve been waiting almost a year to get my medications, everything except my anti-rejections. I’m still trying to bug the doctors about it but they’re like, we can’t do anything, we can’t push it any further.”

Saviskoff says she has gotten used to receiving bad news, having been told since age six that her prognosis is grim. Now she’s reaching out to others to get some good news for herself.

“I never really ask for much at all, because everybody keeps telling me there’s nothing else they can help me with or do for me,” said Saviskoff.

Saviskoff’s GoFundMe site is at https://www.gofundme.com/pm9zqa3s.

 

Just Posted

Sagmoen neighbours recall alleged hammer attack

Woman was screaming outside Maple Ridge townhouse in 2013

Accused Shuswap drug smuggler to be extradited

Supreme Court of Canada upholds extradition order for accused Shuswap drug smuggler, Colin Martin

Police issue warrant for Sicamous man

Sheldon Odd wanted for theft under $5,000

Trustee to consider opening outdoor school in September

Staff recommend South Canoe School re-open with a new district program

Okanagan’s first Christmas was cold and bleak

Father Pandosy and his crew likely spent their first Christmas cold and hungry

Holiday Train rolls through the Shuswap

Hundreds of people have gathered in Sicamous, Canoe and Salmon Arm for… Continue reading

What’s happening

Find out about the events happening in your community this weekend

Interior Health holding immunization clinic in Vernon Saturday

IH issues list of Okanagan meningococcal immunization clinics

Court denies WestJet’s bid to toss out discrimination lawsuit of former worker

Mandalena Lewis is suing WestJet over allegations of gender-based discrimination

Tim Hortons owners honoured

Sicamous Tims owners Jonathan and Nicholas Dow receive Inclusive Employer Award

VIDEO: 3 months later, rescued sea lion released back into ocean

The young animal was found in Campbell River three months ago

ERS band students swing in the season with Winter Concert

Show features mix of modern numbers and Christmas classics

One convicted, two cleared in 2014 deaths of men in B.C.’s Cariboo

Andrew Jongbloets convicted of manslaughter in deaths of Matthew Hennigar, 23 and Kalvin Andy, 22

AHUS patient Shantee Anaquod is home for Christmas

Less than a month after receiving first dose of $750K drug, 23 year old healthy enough to go home

Most Read