LWB Community Blog


Standing with Mothers: Cleft Surgeries

Every year from 2004 to 2019, LWB sent a team of doctors overseas to help provide surgery for children born with cleft lip and palate. We’ve always been passionate about helping children born with this medical condition, and so we were of course disappointed when our 2020 cleft surgery trip to India had to be canceled due to COVID.

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Standing with Mothers: Meet Rory

All this week, we’re raising funds for our Unity Initiative, which provides essential medical care for children whose impoverished families cannot afford their surgeries. Today we’d like to introduce you to nine-month-old Rory, whose life now depends on the kindness of strangers.

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Stories of Hope: Frannie

We first met four-year-old Frannie back in June. This sweet little girl had been born with a large Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD) in her heart. With this medical condition, blood flows through the lower chambers of the heart into the lungs, forcing them to work harder. Over time, a large VSD can lead to the development of pulmonary hypertension, stroke, and sadly even heart failure. Frannie’s mom had written an emotional letter to LWB asking for help for her daughter. She told us that Frannie had been weak since birth, prone to fevers and colds, and often needing to be rushed to the hospital when she fell ill. When a doctor finally told the mom this year that Frannie had a heart defect, she said that her world fell apart.

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Unity Update: Selia, Bella, and Pete

Recently, seven-year-old Selia was taken to the hospital with pneumonia and could not easily recover. Doctors told her concerned family that she had a VSD heart defect that needed repair. The hospital told the family about our Unity Initiative, a program to help impoverished families remain together by funding medical care. Next, a generous supporter of our Unity Initiative funded Selia’s heart surgery, and she arrived at the hospital yesterday to prepare for surgery.

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New Medical Cases in China

This week we’ve welcomed four new children into our medical program.  We’d like to introduce you to them so you can send every positive thought their way. The first two children are from separate orphanages in central China. Baby Avery is from one of our partner orphanages and was admitted to the provincial children’s hospital with a severe case of pneumonia.

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Unity Update: Cody and Drew

Now that COVID-19 has stabilized in China, our Unity Initiative is once again receiving new children into our program and providing life-saving surgeries to children from rural areas of Anhui province. We recently welcomed two new children into our program: Cody and Drew. Cody was diagnosed with his heart defect when he was less than one week old. This news was “snow plus frost” to his parents who did not want to believe it was possible. They took him to several different hospitals, hoping someone would give them a different diagnosis, as they knew they could never afford the costs of heart surgery on the father’s meager and sporadic income.

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Look For The Helpers

If you’ve turned on your TV at all these last few weeks, you’ve seen it. We all have. The news of this new coronavirus and the numbers of those now sick growing higher every single day has filled all of our hearts and minds these last few weeks. China is home to so many we love: our Unity families, the doctors with whom we partner, our sweet healing home babies, and our friends. Our hearts go out to them all as they stand together to weather this storm.

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Stories Of The Heart: Clara

There’s a certain joy that comes when new Unity photos and referrals come in. Another chance for hope, another heart to be healed, another family that will remain together — as they always should be. This is especially true for little Clara.

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Stories of the Heart: Warrior Cousins Bethany and Haley

When we turned down the road headed towards their home, they were waiting at the corner:  smiling, waving, flagging us down. Little Bethany was holding tight to both of their hands, her mama and baba. Before we were even out of the car, they were lifting her up and holding her out for us to see. “Look! Look! Look how much she’s grown! She’s so much stronger now! She can walk and run! She is getting into EVERYTHING!”

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Stories of the Heart: Chairs4Change, a Unity Initiative Partnership

From rural villages across Anhui, we hear the stories, over and over again. Stories of deep love, of great courage, and of sacrifice beyond comprehension — families willing to do whatever it takes to find hope for their child. Tia is one of these children. She and her family walked into the local hospital, hearts beating hard with nerves. The doctor listened to her heart & hooked her up to all sorts of machines she had never seen before — measuring each thump, the strength of each beat. He shook his head and delivered the devastating news:  “Your daughter was born with a complex heart defect and will need surgery to live. She will not survive without. What would you like to do?”

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