A chair for Malachi
For nearly a year now, the mission has been keeping an eye on a little boy named Malachi, the grandson of one of the widows in the Amigo Orphan Program. Although not technically in the program, since both of his parents are alive and love him like crazy, the mission has been helping with health checkups, medicines when needed and encouraging this family. Malachi suffers from Hydrocephaly. In Canada this condition would be treated very quickly, shunts to drain the fluid would be inserted and if necessary the skull would be reshaped very quickly to ensure as little permanent damage as possible. Malachi has been suffering from this for most of his young life, and his head is now so heavy he cannot sit or even roll over as his neck cannot support the weight of it. His parents received a transfer from the hospital to be seen by a surgeon far away in a different city, but fear of the unknown, the prohibitive cost, and a lack of clear information made them delay until they were told by one doctor it was too late.
It is heartbreaking to watch as they lovingly care for this precious little boy, knowing full well that as the pressure continues to build in his head, he will slowly have more and more pain until he passes away. Despite this knowledge they care for him and encourage him to do what he can. This past month they dug a hole in the yard, with a sloped side, so he could be more upright and see what was going on around him. As they proudly showed us their idea, I knew there was something we could do to help. That very week we went to town and purchased a stroller with a reclining back, as well as tightly woven blankets to make rolled body and head supports, and once we had them ready, delivered it to the family for them to use. There were smiles all around as Malachi got to sit in his chair, and after a day or two to get used to it, they came to visit us here at the mission to show us how much he enjoys it and how much it has eased the burden on his young mother’s back.
Please pray with us as we consider how we can best help this family. We have heard recently “thru the grapevine” that there is the possibility that it may not be too late for him and there may actually be a surgeon who does this type of surgery in a city about 4 hours from here, so we are looking into getting the information needed for this family to consider their options.
By Heather Neufeld