A 41-year-old migrant fisherman who was almost sent back home to Indonesia after being fired because of being diagnosed with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) was granted permission to stay in Taiwan for another year for treatment of his cancer.

Wanto worked as a fisherman at Nanfang-ao Fishing Port, Yilan county, for around eight years, and his wife came last year as a caregiver. The couple decided to work in Taiwan in order to make a better living than they could in Indonesia, The Liberty Times reported.

The man reportedly began having frequent nosebleeds last year and developed a painless lump in his neck this June, prompting him to consult a medical practitioner, who diagnosed him with Stage 4 NPC.

After starting to receive chemotherapy at Lotung Poh-Ai Hospital, Wanto was no longer able to work on a fishing boat, and thus was fired in mid-August.

Under Taiwan law, a terminated migrant worker must find a new employer within two months or be sent back to his mother country. However, Yilan County Service Center of the National Immigration Agency learned of Wanto’s case and applied for a one-year extension of stay for him, hoping that he could concentrate on his cancer treatments.

Wanto expressed his deep gratitude, especially to the National Immigration Agency and Yilan Migrant Fishermen Union, and many other kindhearted Taiwanese people he had encountered.