T&T footballer Shade seeking funds for toe surgery

T&T WOMEN’S football team striker Mariah Shade is currently on a fund-raising drive to offset the cost for her toe surgery on her left foot.

The 28-year-old fractured her tailbone in 2018 and underwent surgery a year later. However, she is still encountering pains and complications, and that process require additional medical attention.

To compound matters, she received a tough tackle during a match between T&T and hosts Colombia in July 2018, which left her with a critical toe injury (osteochondral defect).

Shade will be having a curry-que on Saturday, at Bennett Village, Santa Flora. However, in keeping with covid19 guidelines, this curry-que (which runs from 11.30 am to 1 pm) will only have curbside pick-ups.

Regarding the fundraiser, Shade said on Thursday, “It’s going really good. I’m getting an overwhelming amount of support. I have to close orders because I reached my target in doing the amount of tickets I wanted to sell.”

She added, “A lot of people who cannot be at the location because it’s in deep South are sending funds to my account and making contributions, even more than the price of the tickets.”

Shade, who has been a member of the national women’s teams, from the Under-17 level, since 2008, declined to comment on the involvement of the TT Football Association (TTFA) towards her recovery. “I’ll be more open (to divulge information) after the surgery,” she said.

The surgery is scheduled for Monday at the West Shore Medical Centre, Westmoorings.

“I was supposed to travel to Miami to do it but it’s just unsafe because of the covid19,” she said.

A devout Christian, Shade is pleased with the response from the public towards her fundraising venture.

“It gives me hope that there is still a lot of kind-hearted people out here. It’s just heart-warming that (people are) leaving from Arima (and) Tunapuna to come to South just to support the curry-que. It’s a good feeling.”

Concerning her physical struggles, Shade said, “I’ve been dealing with two major injuries for the last two years. I’ve been in a pain literally every day. Almost every other night I’ll be rolling in bed in pain because of the tailbone pain, as well as my toe.”

She continued, “I get pain upon walking, pain wearing certain type of footwear, certain types of ‘heels’ is a no-no. The pain has been a lot, emotionally, physically, every way it’s been very challenging.”

How is the support from her national teammates? “A lot of them have been sharing posters I’ve been posting up on social media. A lot of them have been reaching out, a lot of them have been supporting, they have supported the cost of therapy itself.”

Anyone wishing to donate to Shade’s medical expenses can do so at RBC Royal Bank TT, account number 110000000576994.