Joel is a one-month old baby boy from Kenya. He is the youngest of three children and lives with his parents. His mother is a farmer, and his father is a construction worker.
When Joel was born, doctors noticed a swelling on his lower back that was leaking fluid. They diagnosed him with spina bifida, a condition in which there is an incomplete formation of the spine and a leaking of cerebrospinal fluid through the gap. If left untreated, this condition can lead to the development of a tethered spinal cord, infections of the exposed tissue, scoliosis, and a rounding of the back.
Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,097, on top of the $52 subsidized by Joel’s family, in order to cover the cost of Joel’s spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 29 and, once completed, will hopefully allow Joel to grow and develop in a healthy manner.
“This was so unexpected and quite devastating,” says Joel’s mother. “But I am encouraged to know that there is a solution to his condition.”