Law student Carmen Rodríguez Domínguez has a unique fundraising strategy to help her pay for a desperately needed kidney operation. She’s raffling off a goat.
On Thursday, Rodríguez, 32, announced the raffle on her Facebook page, posting a photo of a spry-looking brown billy goat named Cruz, along with a photo of her debit card so purchasers could deposit money to her account.
One hundred tickets were sold at 50 pesos each, all were spoken for by Friday evening, raising a total of 5,000 pesos toward the cost of her operation, which is 50,000 pesos (about US $2,230).
The young woman’s ordeal began on June 1 when she went to the doctor while suffering excruciating pain. Tests and X-rays showed that her right kidney was infected and not functioning correctly.
“I left crying with my mom, so many things were going through my head, I came out of the doctor looking for a urologist, and she confirmed that my kidney was damaged and was not working,” she wrote on Facebook.
By June 5 she had undergone her first operation.
Another surgery was performed on June 17, depleting the family’s savings.
Rodríguez, who lives in Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, is currently catheterized, which she says causes her significant pain. The third operation needs to happen very soon, she says, within the next six weeks before the catheters need to be replaced.
The idea to raffle off a goat was her mother’s, Rodríguez says, and mother and daughter, who have already raffled off a cake, plan to continue raising funds by selling meals and desserts in order to meet their financial goal.
Classmates have also created a Facebook page, Unidos Con Carmen, where friends, acquaintances and even strangers have donated to her cause.
“I know that we are in difficult times, that some of us do not have a good job, but I know that the contributions people have made come from the bottom of their hearts and I personally thank them infinitely for their support,” she wrote on Facebook.
Rodríguez’s bank, Santander, got wind of her situation and yesterday posted to Twitter that more information would be forthcoming as to how they could help her meet her 50,000-peso goal.
They also indicated that they would like to award the young woman a scholarship.
“We have already talked to her and soon we will be offering support,” said Marcela Espinosa, Santander’s director of sustainability. “We know there is always an opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life and our best wish is for Carmen to get better.”
Rodríguez, an A student, said that before she became ill she was focused on finishing her studies and starting her career, which has been temporarily derailed by her medical problems.
“From my heart, I thank everyone who has helped me,” she said, “because I very much want to live.”