By Joseph Suess
Growing up in the slums of Mumbai (Bombay) offered little opportunity for little Angura. While Mumbai boasts as being the main industrial and financial center of India, it also has the dubious distinction that half of its population lives in slums or near slums.
As further odds against ever having a chance at life, Angura had developed polio at age 2, and now at age 7 was severely deformed. She suffered from post-polio-paralysis in both legs, her knee joints being particularly affected. She was not able to walk, and could only stand up with support.
Angura’s life was destined to change the day that volunteers representing Child & Family Welfare Foundation (CFWF) visited her area of town to locate children in need of correctional surgery. Her relatives learned that Child & Family Welfare Foundation organizes medical camps providing free polio operations for handicapped children in their area.
Angura's deformity was said to be difficult to correct. In fact prior to this, no surgeon or hospital had even suggested correctional surgery. Polio specialist Dr. Paresh M. Desai, who heads the CFWF medical department, scheduled an analysis for Angura and approved a 4-step surgery.
After the completion of a lengthy series of correctional surgeries, Angura received an independent caliper for each leg with shoes attached. It was a joyful day when the calipers were fitted on and crutches adjusted. Off she went, walking away, for the first time in her life. She was laughing and crying at the same time!
Angura has returned now to her village with her family, where for the first time she can walk to school all by herself.
Angura had polio since age 2, and was severely deformed.
Angura's legs now straight after successful operations.
Angura, now 10, much more outgoing, and able to move around well on her own.
Child & Family Welfare Foundation provides effective yet inexpensive corrective surgery for crippled children whose families would be otherwise unable to afford it.(Note: A standard operation can be performed for roughly $100 per child, while the more difficult limb-lengthening surgery is US $210.)If you would like to change a child’s life forever, click here.
Joseph Suess is the Project Manager of Child & Family Welfare Foundation, a FCF Project in Mumbai (Bombay), India