This World Thalassemia Day, a Vadodara-based NGO called The Wishing Factory launched a massive campaign with the support of eminent individuals from the country. They urged everyone to put up a picture of half their face on social media and tag #AadhiwaliZIndagiMitao.
This half face was a reminder of this deadly disease that stole lives half way and urged people to get tested. The celebrities posted a common message tagging and urging others to do the same.
Speaking about the initiative, Sonakhi said:
"I just met some amazing people at The Wishing Factory. Thalassemia is something that the patients do not plan for or ask for. So all I wanted to tell everyone is that when you get married, please have a Thalassemia test done before you conceive a child so that you do not transfer this disorder to your future generations. It’s something that needs to be prevented and controlled." - Sonakshi Sinha
Kunal Kapoor made some stark observations about the issue in India:
"People don’t usually consider a threat and that is only because Thalassemia minor has barely any visible symptoms. But the harsh reality is that India has over 40 million Thalassemia Minor carrier’s, so you never know if the odds can go wrong. Hence, the perception must change and every person getting married or starting a family should know about his/her Thalassemia status."
Others like Abhishek Bachchan, Anil Kapoor, Farah Khan, Rajkumar Rao, Arjun Kapoor, Huma Qureshi also came forth to show support.
The Wishing Factory is non-profit working for Thalassemia Major patients in various parts of India, providing these patients with improved healthcare and livelihood support. The organisation was started in 2015 by Partth Thakur, who suffers from Thalassemia Major himself.
In the words of Parth:
"Since I was a 3 month old child, I would have to get my blood pumped every three weeks - that is the life of a thalassemia major patient. Growing up, I read every article I could find and came to the conclusion that I wouldn’t live more than 16 years. Everyday was filled with fear, wondering if it was my last."
But once Parth realised that with the progress of the medication, his life could be extended as far as 30 years or even more, he decided he wanted to help spread awareness about thalassemia and also support the healthcare and education of over 2000+ patients across different cities of the country.
Parth feels that while a lot has been written about the disorder but the awareness levels are still low and people don’t treat it as seriously. And while testing and vaccination for other prominent illnesses have been pressed upon, thalassemia still remains under the wraps.
"I want to make a difference for people who are suffering from thalassemia and try and eradicate this blood disorder for generations to come before I leave this beautiful place."
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