On a recent trip to rural Nicaragua, my path crossed with many children who have mental and or physical disabilities. Unlike medical care available in the United States for children who face these kinds of challenges, the patchwork medical system of Nicaragua and other Third World nations provides a stark contrast.
While help is sometimes available for children with handicaps, often other barriers stop children ever finding their way to extensive medical care. Barriers include no money for transportation to and from far-off doctors, parental abandonment of children with disabilities and the breakup of families due to a child’s handicap. A “safety net” that exists in the structured medical system enjoyed in the United States just seems a dream for many in this diverse country of humble people and beautiful landscapes.
On a recent visit to Nicaragua, my path crossed with children served by the Lily’s Hope program. We at Kids in Crisis work with a children’s home, a farm that grows food for children we serve, feeding centers supplied with food from Feed My Starving Children and Samaritan’s International. Through our Lily’s Hope program, we provide practical help to 195 families who have children with disabilities. Children of Lily’s Hope receive soy-enriched rice through our partnership with local organizations, supplied by FMSC.
Miracle was a kid in crisis who is helped. Miracle has a prosthesis from the knee down on one of her little legs. At 4 years old, she’s curious, energized and fun to be around, so it is easy to overlook her situation.
In the United States, the results of such an accident could mean future support for a child who now had only one fully formed leg. However, this is not so in Nicaragua. The family’s only recompense for this horrible accident was the offer of a job as a janitor in the hospital to Miracle’s father.
I’m happy to report that Miracle’s family has stayed together under a tough circumstance and they work together to keep life normal for Miracle. Help Kids in Crisis do more for kids like Miracle! Be come a monthly sponsor today.