Our second day of clinics is complete and there are stories to tell:
I first met Maria Angela at Yancana Huasy in Lima in 2009. Angela was four at the time and had never tolerated bending at her hips and knees enough to stay in a sitting position. After working on a wheelchair with many postural supports during that first clinic, Angela and her mother came back two days later for follow up because I was not sure she could tolerate sitting in the chair at all. What a surprise to see Angela (now age 8) and her mother (Silvia) on Monday morning! Two years ago they moved to Cusco, and traveled to the clinic in Arequipa because Angela had outgrown her wheelchair. Silvia pulled out the photo that was taken at the 2009 clinic – what a nice reunion! She reported that it had taken 18 months for Angela to completely adjust to sitting in her wheelchair but now she is happiest when she is in it. This time it took all Monday afternoon and part of today to complete Angela’s new chair but it came out great!
Roxana is 9 years old but she is the size of a small 4 year old. She lives in a remote area and had never had any therapy attention before today. Her mother unwrapped her from a blanket that encased her completely, revealing the scars of many healed pressure sores on her hips and tailbone. Creating a supportive chair that she could tolerate sitting in was an all day job for Kim, assisted by Mary Beth – but the results were wonderful. Roxana also left with specially fabricated supports to help limit progression of contractures and body distortion as she sleeps.