TUCKAHOE, N.Y. -- A fundraiser was recently launched for Tuckahoe Middle School student Jenna Velez, who is battling the rare condition amyoplasia arthrogryposis multiplex.
"I grieved and prayed for strength to get through the day and after she was born all the hurtful things people would say to me," said her mother, Arelis. "I've heard it all but now Jenna does. We have never heard it in Tuckahoe; this community has always been [accepting] and kind. I prayed Jenna would be surrounded by good kids and that they wouldn't only see her crutches or braces. I have gotten comments on how beautiful my children are, and for Jenna I get 'What's wrong with her?' I wanted people to see past the crutches and braces. I wanted them to see her smile, her hair and get to know her heart. We found that here in Tuckahoe."
Jenna is scheduled to have her sixth surgery at the end of the month. Her parents, Herman and Arelis, are taking a leave of absence from work to support and care for Jenna.
To donate, visit the Let's Help Jenna page on GoFundMe .
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.