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This fundraiser ended on 08/01/12

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This is the site for Erica Clarke's hip replacement fund. The funds will be used for related expenses not covered by insurance.

Hello All!

Let me begin by saying that creating this site is a step of faith for me. I have never been one to want to share all my personal business with others. No matter the circumstance - good, bad or otherwise - I have always been one just push forward and believe that I could solve everything on my own. These last few years have proven me wrong.
I have learned the real meaning of the scripture in James 4:2- "You have not because you ask not." So, today, I am asking for your help.

I have a form of Cerebral Palsy known as Spastic Diplegia - which effects the bone, muscle and tendon function in both of my legs. I began receiving medical treatment for my illness right after being diagnosed at the age of 3. I have undergone countless surgeries, years of physical and occupational therapy and other treatments.

Thanks be to God, I am still walking at the age of 34, which is largely unheard of for people like me. And for many years, I was doing quite well. But at age 27, I began to have major physical setbacks. I began to notice numbness and tingling in both legs and lost a significant amount of motor function and range of motion. I began to loose my balance quite frequently and had some major soft tissue injuries.

I had heard that CP patients like me had begun responding well to joint replacement surgeries and was very interested in if I would be a viable candidate. I fought with insurance companies and doctors for years that claimed that there was very little that they could do for me and that they didn't see me as a candidate for the procedure. After 5 years, I had given up hope. I was wearing a back/hip stabilizing brace and walking on two arm crutches for support. I had resigned myself to eventually losing all mobility and ending up eventually in a wheelchair.

I relocated in 2010 to Pittsburgh, PA to advance my education - completely unaware that this would also open the medical doors I was desperately in need of. I attended an event with a close friend where a woman shared her testimony of years of physical aliments.

Something she said struck us both that night - "prayer is good but do not give up on medical intervention. Don't stop until every opportunity has been exhausted!" With her encouragement, I began to seek out a surgeon here that would help me. After only a few weeks, I got an appointment with the top hip reconstructionist in area and he approved me as a candidate!
I had my left hip replaced in December 2011 and my rehab and recovery was more than what I could have imagined!! I have regained old (and new) abilities and feel better than I have in years!
Recently, however, we have noticed a loss in mobility on my right side - numbness and tingling has resurfaced there as well. Needless to say, I need the right hip replaced as well.
Surgery is scheduled for August 2 and this is where you can help. I am unable to secure summer employment because of the procedure and need assistance covering my personal expenses until I return to work in September.
This 3k will help me to pay my rent, car payment, insurance premiums and a host of other personal expenses that are not covered by insurance.
I am not eligible for unemployment, SSI or short term disability - the only resource I have is my family, friends and colleagues.
I pray that you find me a worthy cause. This will help me get my life back on track.

Thank you in advance for your willingness to give!

Erica Clarke

If you would like to mail a check directly, please feel free to do so. Make the check payable to Erica Clarke and send it to 1069 Findley Drive, Apt. 2, Pittsburgh, PA 15221.
If you have more questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me directly at 540.246.1077.
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