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Kids help cancer patient
The 30 children who brought in pennies, nickels and dimes each day last week during Vacation Bible School don't know Malia Lopez.
They said they would have loved to have met the little girl Friday, when they presented more than $320 to her mother, but Leukemia has taken a toll on the 3-year-old's immune system and she must avoid being around other children as much as possible.
"It's nice that we can help her," said Shayla Hayton, 10, who attended Vacation Bible School at the Federated Church of Orland for the first time this summer.
"We want her to get well," said Anthony Dolz, 5.
Sarah Pitcher, the longtime Vacation Bible School director, said the children were very inquisitive about Malia, who was diagnosed on April 30 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or cancer of the white blood cells.
"They asked a lot of questions and were very concerned," Pitcher said.
The Federated Church has sponsored Vacation Bible School for decades, with children providing an offering to needy causes each summer.
This year, the children also donated $110 to Nets for Africa, which helps stave off childhood diseases on that continent, and brought in canned food for the Orland Pantry.
"They would bring in change by the pockets full, or in jars or baggies," Pitcher said.
Malia's mother, Sabrina Lopez said the family was grateful for the donation, which will help with transportation costs to and from Sacramento, where Malia is undergoing chemotherapy.