Norfolk man campaigns to save life of friend stranded in Cambodia
PUBLISHED: 21:17 21 August 2020 | UPDATED: 10:57 22 August 2020
A Norfolk man is fighting to save his friend’s life by raising money to get him home to the UK from Cambodia to get the medical treatment he desperately needs.
Matthew Roberts, 47, is suffering from a serious and currently undiagnosed underlying condition which is causing a blood disease.
His friend Louis Doughty said Mr Roberts’ falling haemoglobin levels mean he could die within days on the street penniless if he is unable to get back to the UK.
Mr Doughty, 37, who is from Norwich and lived in Fakenham, met Mr Roberts while travelling in Cambodia and is promoting a Crowdfunding campaign set up by friend Katie Holmes to raise the £2,000 needed to get Mr Roberts home.
Mr Doughty, who is currently in Cambodia’s capital Phnom Pehn, said: “Matt is the nicest guy you could meet. We instantly clicked. He’s got a great sense of humour and a heart of gold.
“He’s found himself in this awful situation, with no money, unable to pay for any more medical care, expired medical insurance and unable to get home.
“I’d urge anyone who can offer anything at all to please donate and help save this man’s life.”
Mr Roberts, who is from Shrewsbury, first became unwell about five weeks ago and his condition has rapidly deteriorated.
He suffers from severe anaemia and stomach ulcers and his haemoglobin levels are dangerously low, preventing oxygen from getting to his vital organs.
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He has had blood transfusions at The Khmer Soviet Friendship Hospital in Phnom Pehn, after Mr Doughty reached out to people on social media to secure blood donations, but can no longer afford treatment.
Mr Doughty said: “If people can find it in their hearts to sacrifice even the smallest amount, collectively we could help save my friend’s life, he does not have to die, please help.”
With the more advanced medical care available under the NHS in the UK, Mr Doughty is desperate to get his friend home.
Complicating matters further, Mr Roberts will not be able to leave Cambodia until he can pay for overstaying, despite his condition.
Mr Doughty said: “This guy has had a lot of bad luck and been given bad advice over the type of visa he got, which is why he is being charged for overstaying.
“Most tourists, stranded because of Covid 19, had their Visa overstay fines wavered.
“Matt tried to do the right thing by getting an EG Visa because he was going to look for work, unfortunately that fell through due to the current Covid crisis, now he’s being punished the ultimate punishment.
“He’s got a lot of life left to live and many things he still wants to do in life. He’s petrified, please help me save his life, he does not want to die.
“Unfortunately the Embassy has not been able to help and he’s left stranded and alone waiting to die when his condition could be reversed with the right care back in the UK.
“But time is not our side, please Matt needs your kindness”
People can donate and share and also see a timeline of events leading to Mr Roberts’ current situation by going to, www.gf.me/u/yqhcw6
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