2010 Cleft Trip – final day
Saturday saw many more children being discharged from the hospital. The nannies had their babies all bundled up and ready to head for the train station for their journeys home. The parents of the rural kids we were able to heal were emotional as they thanked our team for helping their children. Our staff in China were deeply moved by their words.
The medical team from the US was trying their best to hurry out of Fujian before Typhoon Meigi came ashore. They were delighted to find that several caregivers and babies would be traveling with them to the airport. Maureen Brogan wrote the following:
“We quickly took the babies onto our laps and got in our last snuggles on the hour long ride. We considered smuggling them on the plane- they would have fit quite nicely in our carry-ons! I loved the way Harris watched the view out the windows, and how he would look up into my eyes and grin. Louise was cooing and snuggling with Jenn, and it was very hard to hand the babies back to their caregivers when we finally arrived. We carefully wrapped them in the quilts Dr Ness’s mom made for them and watched as they checked into their flights.
We had a bumpy ride to Hong Kong and a short delay for our flights back to the US. Our thoughts and conversation on the plane were of the children we had fallen in love with during the week. We know they can all look forward to a brighter future, thanks to everyone who made this trip possible.”
Harris looking out the window as he gets ready to travel home
Maureen shared with us that three children in particular are weighing on her heart right now:
Louie, a sweet 6 year old boy, who was so cooperative the entire time he was in the hospital. He had not been considered for adoption as it was thought that his lip repair did not look nice enough. Now that his lip has been revised by Dr. Ness, it is hoped that he will be eligible for adoption soon. Maureen gave him a get well card from her daughter, Aiying, and he quietly asked if he could have a toy to bring back to his best friend at the orphanage. His caregiver told us that he was anxious to share his sticker book with his friend, a girl about 9 years old. We were happy to let him choose a beanie baby to give to her too, and he carefully looked for the exact right gift for her and choose a koala bear. We gave him a stack of sticker books to share with the other children, and he packed them up with a small smile and left clutching his get well card and balloon dog. The family who chooses him will be blessed with a very handsome, gentle, sweet son. We hope he gets his chance for a family soon.
Zachary, who had his palate repaired, still has a severe protrusion of his front teeth and gum. Despite this condition, he is a handsome boy. He needs an orthodontist/oral surgeon to start moving his jaw and upper teeth into the proper position. This procedure is not available in Fuzhou and his best hope for a bright future is adoption. He is a curious, busy toddler who treasures his friends. He was up and exploring with his friends just hours after surgery. However, after his friends had their surgeries the next day, he stuck close to them in their beds until they felt better and were ready to join him in his adventures in the hallways. We hope there is a family who can look beyond his upper jaw and see the handsome little boy who treasures friends and is ready for adventures and a family of his own.
Garret was unable to be helped on this trip. He has very little upper lip tissue left after the failure of his first surgery last winter. He needs several procedures which are not available in China, and his best hope is to be adopted so he can receive the medical care he needs for a full and happy life. He is a jolly, sturdy, playful baby. With his ready grin and sparkling eyes, he charmed everyone he met. He kept us laughing all day, every day as he played with the student nurses and then quickly learned to get upright and start to toddle. To watch and record his first steps was a joy for our team, and it broke our hearts that we could not help him this trip. We are all praying that a wonderful family will come forward who will love him completely and help him receive the surgeries he needs.
Everyone who met Garret fell in love with him!
We hope you enjoy some more of the photos below of the children helped during this trip. Thank you a thousand times over for supporting our work, and especially for supporting the children who need a helping hand.
Getting one last snuggle with Louise before she heads back to her orphanage
Mary’s caregiver took her outside to enjoy the sunshine before they headed home
Joel’s nanny had him all bundled before they left the hospital
Maureen saying goodbye to Fenn, who is all smiles again
My nanny thinks I am SO handsome!
Ming Yi’s mom was very emotional as they left
Leslie sleeping peacefully in her nanny’s arms
THANK YOU for making a difference in their lives!