NewsKern's Kindness


Community rallies around Bakersfield cancer patient

“We’re just trying to give her the best life that we can."
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Posted at 5:49 AM, Feb 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-21 14:11:13-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Delilah Loya is an 8-year-old cancer patient in Bakersfield who’s been through a lot. The community recently rallied around her and her family though, and Delilah’s mom, Samantha, told 23ABC it means the world to them.

“We’re just trying to give her the best life that we can," she said.

In 2019, Delilah was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma.

"I didn't think this was going to be our life four years later still, but here we are and here she is, and she's still fighting," said Samantha.

Thanks to Campaign One At A Time, her dreams of visiting hot springs in Colorado are now a possibility. The organization raises money for families of children with critical illnesses to do something fun.

"Her mom just wanted to provide her with some joy, give her something really happy to look forward to, and [we're] trying to make that happen for them," said Campaign Director Nick Ordonez.

Another cancer mom suggested Samantha reach out to the nonprofit. She’s been so focused on Delilah though, she didn’t even realize their campaign hit its goal.

"I'm so grateful for the generosity of people to just reach out and donate to strangers for a little girl so that she could go on a dream trip. [It] means the absolute world to us. There's no words to even explain [how] I truly feel," said Samantha. "To be able to take my baby girl on a trip that she's always wanted to go on but I wouldn't be able to do on our own without the help of everybody, [it's] very heartwarming."

People have also donated for things like a $15,000 hospital bill, and gas and hotels for all their hospital visits in Los Angeles.

Samantha said she wants everyone to know just how big of a difference they’re making.

"You're helping a little kid who wouldn't get this opportunity. You're helping them go out and enjoy themselves when [they] hardly ever get to do that," she said. "When they feel good, we take those moments and we run with them, so thank you. Thank you so much."

Delilah is about to start new treatment and hopefully get into a clinical trial that genetically modifies her stem cells.

Samantha said they'll try to visit Colorado Springs as soon as possible.

It’s been a tough journey but the community’s support keeps them strong.

"I hate it that she can't enjoy herself like she wants to, but the generosity and the love that everybody shows, it's amazing," said Samantha. "I know that she's going to feel better for us to be able to take her on the trip. It's just a matter of time."

Even though the goal has been reached, you can still donate to other kids’ campaigns. If you’d like to donate or refer a child, click here.