A Little Boy with a Big Smile
Back in February, a precious boy named Lele was brought to One Family Foundation. He was a sick little boy with special needs and it was becoming too much for his parents to take care of him. Sadly, in Haiti, most special needs children are abandoned because resources for these children are very limited, unlike in the United States, and they are seen as a burden to the family. It is often acceptable in society to abandon the child because of their disability. Seeing these situations can be extremely difficult.
While Third World Missions was in Haiti, my husband had a nurse on his team who was able to assess Lele. She noted some abnormal breathing and heavy wheezing. Lele had a recent battle with pneumonia and another mission team the week prior to Matt arriving, had done a great job taking care of him.However, we were concerned it had returned, as it often can if proper medications were not given. Lele was brand new to One Family and without much information from his parents and very little information on his current medical conditions, we began searching for options. Third World Missions has not had a special needs child to help before but we were absolutely willing. I would love to say I was fully confident that God would provide what he needed, but I shed tears and doubted this. Even in ministry, when time and time again God has never failed, sometimes my flesh takes over and I worry. I was concerned we would not be able to take Lele in permanently at One Family. My main concern was that he was too sick and may not survive, especially after seeing the videos of his breathing condition. You could watch Lele trying to breathe and it was horrendous and frightening, dangerous and scary to watch, and yes I was fearful.
Our nurse Victoria, did thorough assessments and gave wonderful explanations of his condition and even video chatted with me multiple times so I could see him, she made him a priority during her trip and rightfully so. While being back here in the states, I was able to take the information to a local physician, who prescribed treatments for him with the antibiotics, steroids and nebulizers that were donated for this trip, after seeing the videos himself. Technology is so beneficial in times like this when we don’t have a physician with us, they are still able to treat over Face Time. How awesome is that! Dr. French prescribed exactly what we needed. Victoria was then able to receive Dr. French’s directions and give Lele the treatment he needed. We are so thankful when nurses are on our teams! You just never know what medical needs will arise. Within a couple of days, Lele started to show tremendous signs of improvement.
In the meantime, Third World Missions was able to locate a therapist near Croix des Bouquets who was willing to meet Lele, educate staff who would be in contact with him and take measurements for a custom wheelchair that would fit him perfectly. We could not be more thankful to Haiti Medical Missions and Erin Cottas for their prompt, attentive care for Lele. Having not met Lele before, Erin jumped right in and was willing to help right away. What a beautiful person she is! Erin has also agreed to work with Lele on an ongoing basis and says “he has such potential!”
Without prayer and support, Lele would not have received what he needed. Through medical donations, he was able to receive the prescriptions he required without traveling to the hospital. A hospital visit in Haiti can take a very long time and only risks exposure to more illness. This is why medicine is so crucial for the children at One Family and this is why we are so thankful for the clinic we now have on site. It can save time when a need is urgent and it can keep the child close to home while still receiving proper care. Lele is doing much better and the staff at One Family has great information on how to care for this sweet boy. He has particular needs and we will be able to meet those to the best of our ability. God has big plans for this little one! One Family now has a wonderful resource in Haiti Medical Missions. This alone is a blessing to try and describe in words would be impossible. I just sit back and I am in awe of the way God had His hand on this precious child. He is in wonderful care and as always, we thank Pastor Joseph and Madame Yanick for loving each child just as they are, just as they arrive at One Family, they are fully accepted. I’m never surprised at their love for the children, I am only humbled by it.