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May 9, 2016 – Yasmeen Anis, a person with thalassemia, shares her personal story below. CAF thanks Yasmeen for letting us share this story with you.
NEGU – Never Ever Give Up – is something Yasmeen’s best friend told her one day, and it’s a motto that she’s kept since that day. Diagnosed with beta thalassemia major, also known as Cooley’s anemia, when she was only six months old, Yasmeen Anis has spent much of her life in doctor’s offices and has received countless blood transfusions.
Now 19 years old, Yasmeen is a sophomore studying elementary education and psychology at her dream school: Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida. She is enrolled in 15 hours of classes and has many leadership positions in various clubs at Flagler College.
Yasmeen has to travel two hours to and from Orlando every four weeks to receive transfusions and often has to miss class and activities on campus. “Although I don’t let my illness define me, it does make it more difficult to balance my studies, health, and extracurricular activities; but I don’t let my thalassemia stop me from doing the best I can at school.” And she has not let it stop her: Yasmeen has been on the President’s and Dean’s list every semester of college, and has even gone to present research at a national conference.
Yasmeen loves reading and volunteering to help others in her spare time. She dreams of being an elementary school teacher in a low socio-economic status area where she can make an impact on her students.
“Whenever things get tough, I just remember to never ever give up!”