Abdullah “Abudi” is unique among Childspring children. He is older than many of the children we serve, and adjusting to life in the US was likely a little harder for him! However, he took his trip to the United States in stride, working though everything from cultural differences in language, food, and customs to figuring out how to be a teenager living abroad.
The fact that Abdullah was able to find care in the US was a bit of a miracle – our contact Haider in Iraq came across him while visiting a market in Abdullah’s town, where he saw Adbullah’s leg in passing. Haider thought Childspring might be able to help, so he shared Abdullah’s case with us. His care team provided expert care and treatment of his condition, leading to his amputation and new prosthetic that now allows him to walk in his new found body.
Because Abdullah was staying here in Atlanta, we got to meet him pretty regularly. He shared stories about Iraq – and even cardamom tea and fig jam. His host parents spoke about how he had changed since having the amputation and prosthetic – developing not only a new ability to walk but a new found sense of confidence and identity. He returned to Iraq this summer now fully able to participate in his social community and with less of the stigma often associated with the burden of disability.
We live in a world where war, poverty, and disease prevent children from accessing the critical surgical care they need. Abudi had something getting in the way of treatment for 16 years. The Childspring International family joined forces to take on his case and share expertise, exemplifying our common call to respond to everyone we encounter with mercy, love, and compassion – especially those on the margins of society.