A critically ill child known as ‘Tiny Tim’ successfully made the journey to Canada, landing in Toronto Friday night.
Tim Alahmad, his father Ezzedin and mother Midia arrived at Toronto’s Pearson Airport where they were greeted by family and friends after a harrowing year that was spent trying to get cleared to come to Canada.
The two-year-old child suffers from a rare condition called epidermolysis bullosa, also known as butterfly syndrome that leaves portions of his skin as fragile as butterfly wings.
The condition causes blistering sores and persistent itching, and can also prohibit swallowing. In a case as severe as Tim’s, skin becomes as fragile as butterfly wings.
Londoner Martha MacRae coordinated the arrival of Tim and his family by lobbying the government and undertaking fundraising efforts after hearing about Tim’s story while volunteering to help other Syrian refugees settle in London.
One year ago she began her campaign to bring Tim and his parents to London. As part of her efforts, MacRae ensured that upon arrival, Tim would receive medical treatments.
“He has never had any pain relief. He’s never had any medical care,” she told CTV News earlier this month. “It’s going to save this kid’s life. And he is going to be able to play and sleep.”
For months now, Tim has been living without medical care in a vacant home in Beirut, Lebanon after fleeing from war-torn Syria.
Tim and his family were finally cleared to come to Canada on June 14.
Following Friday’s arrival at Pearson Airport, MacRae said she was “overwhelmed” to finally see Tim and his parents arrive in Canada after a year of dedicated efforts.
Martha MacRae, Mustafa Alahmad, his wife and their son Amin welcome ‘Tiny Tim’ and his parents at Toronto Pearson Airport on June 17, 2022, following their arrival in Canada. (Source: Martha MacRae)
Mustafa Alahmad is Tim’s uncle and currently lives in London. Earlier this month he told CTV News that he understands Tim’s current situation as his own son Amin suffers from the same condition.
“We want to thank everybody that helped us to get Ezzedin and his family here to Canada,” said Mustafa.
The Alahmad family will be supported in London by their family, the Syrian community and the donations of more than 100 Londoners.
Tim is being admitted to Children’s Hospital in London this weekend to begin treatment.
— With files from CTV News London’s Sean Irvine
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