Back in 2022, Rob found himself stopping in his tracks every time that he took a walk with his dog Skipper. He had strong suspicions that it was due to a vascular condition that some of his family members were affected by, including his brother. Rob received his diagnosis, in July 2022 confirming he had Intermittent Claudication, a condition that causes severe cramp like pain in the legs, that would have him stop walking, pause, and stand still until the pain subsided. This condition also severely impacts energy levels and limits upper-body ability. To Rob, this would come as a huge blow since he’s an accomplished wood worker who builds cabinetry and what he calls, “functional art”; pieces that go into his local community.
With delays plaguing Rob’s plans to get his treatment done in Canada, he ended up contemplating undergoing surgery in the Netherlands. After multiple phone calls and a little bit of luck, Rob finally got a call-back from Vancouver General Hospital a few months later on May 1, 2023, confirming a surgery appointment on May 10th, for his condition.
But with the looming cost of financing his trip , Rob had to figure out how he would travel to Vancouver. With less than a week to plan his travel, Rob had no other option but to book his flight tickets and accommodation with his credit card. He was elated to get his treatment done nonetheless because he had been waiting for so long. Rob shared this good news with all his family and friends when he received a call from one of them, telling him about her experience with Hope Air. “Blessings come in small packages. My friend ended up recommending Hope Air to me and she said ‘They have been such a blessing to me last December.’” says Rob.
Being 69 years old and having limited income, Rob knew he had to cancel the flight tickets he had booked and give Hope Air a shot. Rob fondly recalls his experience with one of Hope Air’s travel co-ordinators, Bhavini who helped him plan his itinerary to Vancouver. “Hope Air is such a grace, such a relief for anyone in a situation like mine. I had no other choice but to pay for my travel before Hope Air’s support.” Rob would also regale the proficient and professional level of care by Vancouver General Hospital staff, as well their social worker who worked in tandem with Bhavini to get Rob down to the hospital.
Rob’s health has greatly improved since his procedure earlier this year, and he’s on his path to recovery. He’s thrilled that he is now able to walk longer distances and can now pursue passions he wasn’t previously able to. Hope Air’s mission is to help people from remote communities like Rob, receive life-saving treatment to continue living life to the fullest.