Fourteen years ago, in Nicaragua, a young woman named Rosa cradled her crying newborn—her first child—and instantly fell in love. She named the baby girl Esmilda.
Rosa had given birth at home, in one of the most difficult places to access in Nicaragua: an indigenous village, located a full day’s journey from the capital city, hemmed in by thick rainforests and the shores of the Atlantic. With no medical personnel present, no one could tell that there was an issue with the baby’s health.
Esmilda had been born with a brain tumor.
The tumor caused a series of strokes when Esmilda was two, unleashing a variety of complications, including the loss of mobility. Her mother would carry her wherever she needed to go, but her father wasn’t around to help—he had abandoned the family shortly after Esmilda was born.
Esmilda’s younger half-brother, José, who is only 10, takes care of Esmilda while their mother earns a living by gathering wood and fruit in the forests to sell. José would carry Esmilda where she needed to go, but once his arms grew tired, she’d be left to crawl on the ground.
This has kept Esmilda from ever going to school, as the nearest one is three miles away. “My back and arms could no longer support Esmilda’s weight,” sobbed an anguished Rosa. “If I, as an adult, can’t carry her very far, how much more difficult is it for her 10-year-old brother to carry her?”
But thanks to the generosity of friends like you, Rosa’s tears turned to joy when she saw her daughter sit in a brand-new wheelchair for the very first time.
Rosa profusely thanked the team from Metanoia Missions, one of our distribution partners in Nicaragua, as they made adjustments to custom-fit the wheelchair to Esmilda. “Our lives will change completely,” she said, grinning as Esmilda grew visibly excited to try out her new wheelchair.
“Now I can go to school!” she exclaimed. “It will be easy. My brother won’t have to carry me. He can just push me.”
“Thank you very much for helping me and for thinking of me,” she told our team.
Since 2001, you’ve helped us send 33,150 wheelchairs to Nicaragua and 1.2 million wheelchairs to 93 countries around the world. That’s more than one million families, like Esmilda’s, whom you’ve blessed by giving the gift of mobility.
With your help, we can help another million by 2025. Would you give a gift today or tell a friend about this mission?