Little Jennifer comes from a small village in Uganda. Her mum first noticed a sizeable lump protruding from Jennifer’s stomach when she was just a couple of months old. She sought medical treatment from a traditional healer but nothing worked and she didn’t have the money to get professional healthcare.
Surgeon’s normally wait until children are a little older before operating on a hernia but Jennifer’s hernia is rather large and surgery is her only option. Umbilical hernias are common in the countries where we work and can be fatal if left untreated as they can become incarcerated (trapped outside of the hernia wall) or strangulated (a section becomes pinched or twisted and cut off from the blood supply). These are great operations to fund as they are typical of our low-cost, high-impact approach.
For many of the families we work with, including Jennifer’s, they would never be able to reach emergency surgery in time if complications were to set in as they live so far from their nearest hospital.
Performing the surgery now means that risk is removed and, if we can cover the bill, that Jennifer’s mum will be able to avoid getting into debt and poverty.