If 2020 hindsight and vision taught us anything, it’s that we're always prepared for the unexpected; something we’ve learned from the planning and deploying hundreds of overseas surgical missions over the last 15 years. So in late spring when the world shut down, we stayed open and kept pushing forward. This unprecedented time brought clarity to our mission and drove us to double down on our efforts to keep elevating standards of care through innovation, empowering our international medical providers to become self-sustaining, and to keep mending kids. This could have only been accomplished by joining forces with like minded foundations, organizations, and individuals. We stepped outside the box, into a new reality that saw us reach over 500 global caregivers with unanticipated impact. It took teamwork, resourcefulness, compassion, humility, and looking beyond obstacles to seek opportunities.
Thank you for the generosity of our partners at Americares and Medshare, along with the Open Hearts Foundation Challenge and many other partners
Thanks to the help of 15 doctors from various hospitals around the country: Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Miller Children's & Women's Hospital Long Beach, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, UC San Diego, UC Irvine, UC San Francisco Benioff Children’s Hospital, and Global ENT Outreach.
Our smart glasses program provides remote surgical training using smart glasses in the operating room. This allows us to stay connected across the world, continue to progress our partners toward self-sustainment and elevate the standard of care when being there in person is not an option.
In a country of over 61 Million inhabitants, 44% of whom are under the age of 15, there are currently no fully trained surgeons in pediatric otolaryngology.
Under the coordination and mentorship of MK volunteer and board member Dr. Ayal Willner, and MK volunteer Dr. Lia Jacobson, Dr. Protas spent 3 weeks in California observing and shadowing Mending Kids volunteer doctors in several hospitals, including USC Keck School of Medicine, UC San Francisco Benioff Children’s Hospital, and Miller Children's & Women's Hospital Long Beach.
As part of our 2020 Individual Surgical Care program, Mending Kids transformed the lives of children from 13 countries around the world. As of December 31st, 2020, Mending Kids has helped 4499 children from 68 countries throughout our various overseas mission and surgical care programs.
Wealth’s mother contacted Mending Kids in hopes of securing a life-saving surgery for her son. After spending more than a year on our waiting list and navigating the constantly changing travel restrictions of the past year, Wealth finally made it to Bangalore, India to receive his much needed open heart surgery. Prior to this, Wealth was unable to run, play, and ride a bike with his friends, nor attend pre-school, due to shortness of breath, weakness, and hypoxemia (low blood oxygen).
Post surgery, Wealth is a different child. He enjoys attending school, playing soccer, and spending time with his friends. He remains healthy, has loads of energy, and eats very well. Wealth shared with us that, when he grows up, he wants to be an engineer. His mother has now been able to return to work and provide for her family without worrying about Wealth’s health and future. She is eternally grateful for the help of Mending Kids and its donors, who gave Wealth a second chance at life.
Thank you to all of you who kept believing in us, and supporting us, in our mission. You helped us push forward so that our medical volunteers could help elevate the standards of care amid virulent obstacles.