Despite financial constraints, a man still tries to earn enough money to cover the treatment of his adopted daughter, who is also a person with a disability suffering from scoliosis (the spine twists and curves to the side) since the age of four.

Teo Hock Teng, 58, who used to collect recycled goods, said that every two or three weeks he had to take Lee Jun Yee, 16, for check-ups and treatment at Melaka Hospital, Melaka, or Kuala Lumpur Hospital (HKL).

He said that, however, his income is now affected because he is unable to work due to health problems and relies on financial assistance from the Social Welfare Department (JKM) of RM250 per month, in addition to contributions from family and friends.

“Every time we go to HKL we need at least RM500 to cover expenses and taxi fares, to make it easier for her to get treatment due to her condition.

“Usually, only when I have enough money, I would take Lee to the hospital due to financial constraints,” he told reporters here today.

Earlier, he received a donation of RM32,000, as a result of fundraising launched by the Lions Club of Tanjung Bidara, to cover the expenses and treatment of his adopted daughter, which was presented by the club’s District 308 B1 governor, Alex Thiam Poh.

Teo added that Lee is now receiving follow-up treatment for scoliosis and physiotherapy at the hospital, and is waiting for the doctor's advice to perform spinal surgery.

He said that they have been staying at his sister's house for the past two years in Banda Hilir, because they are unable to pay the rent of RM400 a month in Taman Merdeka.

“Even though Lee is not my biological daughter, I love and care for her like my own flesh and blood, and feel responsible to make sure she gets the best treatment.

“When she was little, my daughter had a hole in her heart, and in addition to scoliosis, she also has asthma and sometimes had seizures,” he said.

Teo said that he looked after Lee since she was four months old, and adopted her when he visited the girl at Melaka Hospital in 2007.

He said that previously Lee was just lying in bed but started showing changes and could walk when she was 10.

Meanwhile, Thiam said that the public's donations were successfully collected within two weeks, and hoped that it would ease the family's burden and that his club was also committed to helping those in need.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency