• Harbin, located hundreds of kilometers near the China-Russia border, is often called as the Ice City.

Harbin, located hundreds of kilometers near the China-Russia border, is often called as the Ice City. (Photo : Getty Images)

"I never expected to have so many strangers helping me in a different place, and I'm really grateful."

This is what Russian Elena Sibileva, 25, shared as she received help from the good Samaritans of the "Ice City" of Harbin in Heilongjiang Province, China Daily reported.

Like Us on Facebook

Sibileva, a nursery teacher, has twin girls who developed cerebral palsy, a condition whose symptoms include having weak muscles, tremors and poor body coordination. Victoria, the older twin, managed to get better after a treatment they received in Moscow, but that was not the case for Daria, the younger one.

The Russian mother hailing from Blagoveshchensk, a city located at the China-Russia border which is nearly 600 kilometers from Harbin, decided to go to the Chinese city as she heard from friends it offers good recovery medical institutions.

Leaving Victoria to her grandmother, Sibileva and Daria went to Harbin. Her first obstacle: having a house to rent during their stay.

Luckily, she met Qi Yize, a student at the Heihe University, whose aunt Qi Mei has a rental agency. Sharing her predicament, Sibileva then received help from the Qi's. She received a second-floor room, and a stroller, milk powder and clothes for Daria.

To further assist the Russian mom, the Qi's launched a WeChat group named "Help Save Dasha" to help raise money for the costly treatment. Dasha is Daria's nickname.

Thanks to the donations they received, Daria was able to receive treatment for four months, which was two months longer than what her mother could originally afford.

According to China Daily, "the child has undergone traditional Chinese medicine therapies such as acupuncture, herbal baths and massages." She has also received modern treatments such as the physiotherapy at the No. 2 Hospital annexed to the Heilongjiang University of Chinese Medicine.

Sibileva and Daria's journey is off to a great start but it is still a long way to go as the treatment will be needed for around two more years. Its total cost is predicted at about 400,000 yuan.

Sibileva shared that she intends to return to Russia by the end of March to renew her visa, as well as to find ways on how to increase her financial resources.