SINGAPORE - A fund-raising campaign for Thai teenager Aroonrak Jattanathammajit who was hospitalised after being hit by a car has collected more than $22,000 from more than 50 people in just over three days.
The campaign on fund-raising website Give.asia, was started by Mr Dennis Yeo, 44, who read about the teenagers plight on the news.
"I heard about how the girl was hit by a car while doing good herself. And now her parents are sleeping in a bed next to her," said Mr Yeo, who works in the non-profit sector. "I found it tragic. That really touched my heart."
On Sept 18, the San Yu Adventist School Secondary 2 student was hit by a car after leaving her hostel in Balestier Road. She had been on her way to school for a programme involving needy residents of Moulmein.
After she was hit, the 16-year-old was taken to KK Women's and Children's Hospital where she underwent two brain operations.
Her parents, who are struggling with a rubber business back in Thailand, have found it difficult to raise funds for her medical fees, which have so far amounted to about $70,000.
They may take her back to Thailand once she is more stable, for further treatment there. "They hope that the cost of treatment in Thailand is cheaper," said Mrs Nicha Thang, 45, a family friend. "If they continue here, I don't think they can afford it." The family has said that they would wait a few weeks to assess the situation.
While the teen's condition has improved slightly, she has yet to regain consciousness. "There is improvement, however she did not wake up yet," said said her father, Mr Sarayuth Jattanathammajit,49 through a translator. "She has body movements, no more diarrhoea. The only thing we can do now is wait and do therapy for her."
Her parents have decided to accept the help offered. "It is difficult to pay the bills because business is not so good. We are grateful for the people who are willing to help," said Mr Jattanathammajit. "This kind act encourages us to have more hope and focus less on our financial issues."
The campaign on fund-raising website Give.asia will continue to run for about two more weeks, said Mr Yeo.