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Meet Esinaso

14-month-old Esinaso from Stellenbosch was a healthy and happy baby girl for the first year of her young life. According to Ntomboxolo, her daughter was in good health and has only ever shown occasional signs of the flu.  This, however, recently changed when Esinaso displayed symptoms of pneumonia and was referred to the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital in Cape Town for treatment.

“I was very worried about my child, we were at home in Stellenbosch and she was coughing a lot and white saliva was coming out of the edges of her mouth,” says Ntomboxolo about the terrible experience of seeing her child suffer.

Soon after arriving at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital, Esinaso was diagnosed with Tetralogy of Fallot, a rare heart condition that involves four major heart defects. Unfortunately, this condition is very serious for Esinaso and it not only affects her heart, but also her little lungs, as the blood flow to her lungs is obstructed. “This was a shock for me, I have never seen my child like this,” says Ntomboxolo.

Esinaso is currently staying in the paediatric Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Hospital and is on a ventilator that is assisting her with her breathing.

According to Ntomboxolo, the doctors and nurses in the ICU are all hopeful and working hard to find the best solution that will help her little girl. “The staff here are very friendly and helpful,” says a positive Ntomboxolo.

Even though Esinaso has not been in ICU for a very long time, Ntomboxolo says that during their time so far, the shortage of space in the ward has definitely hindered her. She now understands that there are so many critically ill children, like her own little girl, who need help from the doctors in the ICU, yet space is limited. “The upgrading is good, I know the space for the parents and children will make a big difference and the new ICU will able to help so many more children,” explains Ntomboxolo.

There are many little children like Esinaso who currently require special care in the paediatric intensive care unit at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital. Help give childhood back by sending an *SMS to 40465 to donate R20 to building a bigger and better ICU or visit

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