Finally, some good news.
Jimmy Thoronko is an athlete who came to the UK for the Commonwealth Games last summer, then disappeared soon after. Thoronko was Sierrra Leone's top 100-meter sprinter, and was expected to bring home medals. Shortly before competing, he received news his uncle had passed away, probably from Ebola. The outbreak had just begun, but the loss took a toll on Jimmy and the races went poorly. At the end of the competition, there was difficulty finding flights for the athletes, as the seriousness of the outbreak became more apparent.
He has been living on the streets of Glasgow in the months since, as Ebola ravaged his home country, killing his adopted mother, brothers and sisters. Last Friday, he was arrested and detained for breaking his visa.
But there's some good news! The story broke and offers to help Jimmy Thoronko came pouring in, from legal help, to petitions, to a successful GoFundMe campaign that's raised over $30,000 this weekend.
Thank you, Internets. (via GoFundMe)
No amount of money can replace what Jimmy Thoronko has lost, but with this support he is facing a better future than he could in Freeport. He told The Guardian about his dreams:
"But after everything I've been through I'm determined not to give up hope...If I had not come to the Commonwealth Games I probably would have died of Ebola along with the rest of my family. I believe I was meant to survive so I can succeed in my dream to be the best sprinter in the world."
Let's hope his dreams come true.