Brooklyn girl who spent 2020 in shelters fights COVID-19 in ICU on 16th birthday

Monica Makes It Happen

NEW YORK — PIX11 News first told you about Scherry Barnett and Schania Burgess, a Brooklyn mother and her daughter with disabilities, back in December.

They are living in a Midtown shelter, waiting to find an affordable apartment. Now, Schania is battling COVID-19 in the hospital. Wednesday is her 16th birthday.

“I want my own room and I want it to be pink, my favorite color,” said Burgess of her dream room back in December.

Schania stole our hearts when we first met her outside The Stewart Hotel, a shelter for homeless families in Midtown. Her mom, Scherry Barnett, reached out to PIX11 News, hoping we could help them find a wheelchair accessible, three-bedroom apartment with their Section 8 voucher.

Just before Valentine’s Day, Barnett says Schania got very sick and was rushed to the hospital, later diagnosed with COVID-19. Schania is now fighting for her life in the ICU and on a ventilator for the13th day straight.

It’s all a lot to deal with for Schania on her 16th birthday. Her mom filled her hospital room with her daughter’s drawings, birthday balloons and teddy bears. Scherry’s just holding on to hope Schania will pull through.

Barnett says there are signs of hope. Schania has recently opened her eyes and moved her arms for a few seconds.

“She has pneumonia, but doctors say she is getting better. She is going to get through this, she is a fighter.”

But this has only made Barnett understand more clearly what her daughter needs to thrive.

“She can’t go back to that shelter once she gets better. She needs a home.”

Barnett is praying her daughter will make a full recovery and says she is sharing her story to remind people about the dangers of COVID-19. Barnett is still looking for an apartment.

You can help give to Schania here.

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