Lexi is a very active four-year-old – she loves to play, sing and dance, especially with friends. Her mom, Gina, shares that she is a very independent, sassy and strong-minded little girl, who doesn’t let anything hold her back.
And that includes her neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) diagnosis, which has caused a tumor to form in her foot. Although benign, doctors are unable to remove the tumor because it is resting on too many nerves.
“To remove the tumor would be like amputating her foot,” says Gina.
This tumor, and the NF1, affects Lexi’s mobility, but a pair of orthotics and regular physical therapy sessions – all provided with assistance from Variety – have helped her make huge strides.
“The orthotics and therapy give her the confidence to be a normal person,” says Gina. “She can keep up with her friends and classmates and still play.”
At therapy, Lexi works on strength, balance and flexibility, all of which help her to walk and jump, just like any other kid.
“She may never be a good runner, but therapy shows her what she can do,” says Gina, before sharing that one of Lexi’s favorite things she has done with the help of therapy was a trip to Disney World. “She was able to be on her feet from open to close!”
Without the help of Variety’s TherHappy Kids program, however, this strength and confidence might not have been attainable for Lexi. Her family’s insurance plan only covers 15 therapy sessions each year – that’s just over one session each month. Variety covers three therapy sessions every month, making up for those insurance overlooks.
And it is with the generosity of one of Variety’s generous partners that this level of assistance is made possible. Express Scripts, a St. Louis-based healthcare opportunity company, is the founding funder of TherHappy Kids and has since maintained its commitment to the program, including a recently announced $50,000 grant – bringing the company’s total contribution to $300,000. Over the six years of our partnership, TherHappy Kids has been able to help fund therapy sessions for hundreds of children.
It is because of Express Scripts that so many Variety Kids are able to live their best lives. Thank you, Express Scripts, for your continued support of the TherHappy Kids program, and of Variety Kids like Lexi.