Lifestyle blog of a stay-at-home Mom


Let us help MARA fulfill her dreams in our own little way...

Last Friday, November 4, 2016; I covered the Filipinaz Fair event in SM Aura BGC Taguig. There are a lot of wonderful products to see and feel - jewelries, bags, clothing, footwear, accessories, paintings, decorations, collectibles, etc - but what caught my attention was the booth which sells paintings for a cause - to help SAVE MARA's life...

Who is Mara?

Mara Velasco Duran is a young and talented lady with big dreams - just like any of us - but unfortunately stricken with a very rare bone marrow disorder called MYELOFIBROSIS.

Myelofibrosis, also known as Myeloid Metaplasia, Chronic Idiopathic Myelofibrosis, and Primary Myelofibrosis is a disorder of the bone marrow, in which the marrow undergoes fibrosis-replacement by fibrous (scar tissue) collagen.

It is a serious disease which impairs the patients inability to generate the body's normal production of red, white blood cells and platelets. The result is extensive scarring of the bone marrow, leading to severe anemia and enlargement of the spleen.

Only 1 in 2 million people gets this rare disease - and MARA is the only known patient diagnosed at the age of 16...

MARA needs your HELP!

Her family appeals to your kind hearts to help Mara overcome this challenge. Her young life is in your hands. They need support to raise millions of pesos for her bone marrow transplant. Every peso you'll spend to buy any painting from their booth will go a long, long way. Every cent you'll donate will help save Mara...

Let me share to you a LETTER from MARA...

"I was born Mara Rhodora Velasco Duran at the Philippine Refugee Processing Center in Morong, Bataan on the 9th day of March, 1990 to a social worker mother and a policeman father.

I was a consistent honor student throughout gradeschool and highschool. I decided to pursue Nursing in college because it is a step closer to my dream of being a doctor. But midway through first semester on my first year in college, I noticed I was jaundiced. Little did I know then I was already at the brink of death because of Thyroid Storm. I had to go through Radioactive Iodine Therapy, twice in one month, being in isolation the whole time. At 16 years old survived a life-threatening ordeal which even left my doctors in awe. I pushed to finish college and on March, 2012, I graduated with the degree of AB International Studies at Miriam College.

Being hired to work for the Department of national Defense was one of the most fulfilling moments of my life. I was helping my country doing something I love and know I was good at - research work. I was given the honor to present my undergraduate thesis abroad using this God-given skill. But upon my return, I had to undergo emergency blood transfusion for I was severely anemic. From then on, I had to be dependent on transfusion every few weeks and I had to quit work. In just a blink of an eye, I've lost one of the few things I was passionate about, and it has broken my heart and spirit.

After 4 biopsies and a plethora of laboratory tests, I was diagnosed with a rare bone marrow cancer, Myelofibrosis. It is so rare that in my age group, only I am known to have it in the Philippines. Only a bone marrow transplant is the cure for this dreaded disease. I wrote this letter in hopes of receiving a helping hands with the funds for my transplant. I have fought, survived and continued pursing my dreams for 26 years and now it is in danger of slipping away again. Will you fight with me and help me extend my LIFE??"

For further information please contact:

Lydia Velasco-Cruz (0917-8991942)
Isadora Duran (09219758958 / 09228080832)

You may also deposit your donations to these accounts:

Lydia Cruz
RCBC C.A. #9010479709

Isadora Duran
BDO S.A. #007250162516
Landbank S.A. #3127071054

The Filipinaz Lifestyle Fair will be showcasing local products until November 6, 2016 at the SMX Aura 3rd Level...


  1. Hopefully more awareness and more people will help Mara.

  2. Such a rare disease. Hope Mara finds cure at the soonest. God bless the young lady.

  3. Hope your message will be able to help Mara reach out to more people with her situations or Doctors who are experienced with her condition

  4. Hope Mara would be able to get the needed support and attention .

  5. This is sad, wish Mara get well soon.

  6. I went to that fair, pity I miss her booth! Where's their booth located? Sayang..

    1. nasa middle ang booth nila noon sis malapit sa entrance, =)

  7. sorry to hear about this. sending good thoughts and wishing Mara well.

  8. Hope Mara will recover soon. Will pray for her speedy recovery.

  9. Very sad to read about Mara and her health condition. May God help her overcome this obstacle.

  10. this is the first time i heard of myelofibrosis... poor little Mara, may God and some kind hearted angels who can afford it help her...

  11. Will share this post with my friends too, hopefully can help out Mara :)

  12. I am praying for Mara's continuous healing and wellness. I can only hope that people will be more aware of this so that they could also help out. Will share this! - Myrra (

  13. This is heartbreaking. But I know Mara will be a source of strength to many who come to know her story. I hope this raises enough awareness to get her the help she needs!

    -Matt Angeles (

  14. For someone so young and currently exploring life, this is a sad thing. I pray that Mara gets all the help she needs for her surgery. Thank you for featuring her on your blog, this is great help for her. - Ann (

  15. Sickness concerning the bone marrow is really heartbreaking. We will include her in our prayers and we hope for the best in her recovery. I hope she will find able people to help her financially :|

  16. It's so sad to read this kind of stories. Each of us is special and deserves to live... and it's great that the community has come together and tries to help Mara. I have a school colleague who got diagnosed with a deadly diseases, she has given no chance to live, months left, but she is still fighting strong, after almost 10 years. So there is hope!

  17. I'm hoping and praying that Mara will be healed.

  18. So sad to hear about Mara's illness. I hope she has a fanpage so people can check out the paintings and contribute to her fund. I hope her condition improves.

  19. I feel sorry for Mara. I can't imagine what she's going through. I hope she's surrounded by love at this point of here life.

  20. It's so heartbreaking to read stories like this :-( I can't imagine what Mara and her family are going through. I hope she gets better soon.

  21. Prayers for her but itll be also better to seek help from other agencys


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