Unfortunately it has been a long road.  We met Claudia, 9 years old, during a public health survey in July 2016 while we visited her house and spoke to her mother about their living conditions and overall health of their family.  We noticed her walking on her hands and hoping with one leg to get around the dirt floor of their house.


Eager to learn more and understand why she did not go to school, we asked more questions than the survey had.  Her mother shared with us that her husband left for work long ago and has not been in contact.  She is a single mother raising her youngest daughter with the support of her oldest daughters.  When Claudia was younger, she would carry her to and from school, which was close to 2 miles away on rocky terrain.  Now that she is older and heavier, her mom can’t lift her and long walks hurt Claudia’s hands and get her tired, so she prefers to stay at home.


When we spoke to Claudia she said her dream was to walk so she could go to school like other girls her age.  Living in the highlands of Guatemala is already hard enough to find work, and thinking about Claudia’s situation, she would struggle to work and find a spouse.  More importantly, she has been thought to be less of a person or that she has been cursed.  She said that a leg and being able to walk around would show everyone that she is not cursed.


Global Healthcare Project wanted to go beyond the public health survey and return for an additional visit to get Claudia a prosthetic leg.  Haley Ciborowski and Bridget Salazar, with the help from generous donors, returned in January of 2017 to the home of Claudia and her mother and coordinated a visit to Guatemala City.  There, they met Doctor Julio Chilel, a doctor who specialized in prosthetics, who helped her get a surgery to prepare for a prosthetic leg.   Unfortunately, Claudia’s dream to walk was not going to happen this trip.  She needed at least 6 weeks of recovery, which we had to return to our jobs in the United States.  Claudia wore a dress and we bought her a new pair of shoes thinking she was going to finally walk.


Dr. Chilel has kept in touch with Haley and Bridget over the months and said that he will not charge for his services, however, we do need to pay for the prosthetic leg, which could range from $2,000-$4,000 depending on the durability.  Of course, in the highlands of Guatemala, where the hills are steep, there is a lot of forest, and it rains hard for 3 months out of the year, durability is crucial.


GHP currently has $2,000 fundraised of the $5,000.  Haley and Bridget coordinated a trip to Guatemala City again for Claudia and her mother to meet Dr. Chilel and get her measurements for the leg.  Claudia was so excited for that trip, but was sad to return home again without a leg.  Nevertheless, she was able to meet others like her who were born without a limb, and see them walk and “be normal” with their new prosthetic limbs.  Her mother even felt relieved to know that it wasn’t a curse on their family and she could educate others in her community.


Now it's time for her very own leg to be constructed! We need your help to fundraise the rest of the money so we can make this a reality for Claudia.

 

Please, if you can help even in the smallest way, consider making it possible for this little girl to walk for the first time.  It will change her life.



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9 year old Claudia’s dreams of walking has still not come true


After an entire year of waiting, and $3,000 left to fundraise, 9-year-old Claudia is still waiting for a prosthetic leg.  A new leg to Claudia means she will be like the other kids her age, she can finally attend school and the curse of not being able to walk will be lifted.

Claudia in the examination room with Haley

Claudia meeting other amputees and inspired that she will finally walk

Claudia’s 8 hour trip to Guatemala City to get her surgery in preparation for a prosthetic leg.

Global Healthcare Project is currently asking for tax deductible donations for the construction of a prosthetic leg for Claudia of the Pueblo Nuevo, Guatemala