Surgery can be a scary thing. It’s especially frightening for children, particularly when it takes them far from their cultural comfort zone. You would think that recovery is the easy part, but for many patients who are getting used to their new look, learning to walk again or still dealing with casts and bandages, the road to recovery brings new challenges.
Mercy Ship’s HOPE (Hospital Out Patient Extension) Center is a place for patients to recover and celebrate their new lives together. The HOPE Center works to make patients and caregivers feel more at home while they recover. It also provides transport to outpatient appointments for physical therapy and check-ups.
We recently visited the Hope Center to play with the recovering kids and encourage the adults. We got to do crafts with them, share a Bible story with them (Peter Walking on Water), and also had a time of singing and dancing, casts and all. They were all very impressed with Will’s dancing and also his acting out of Peter walking the water to Jesus. Briana was a hit with the kids, particularly two twin girls who both suffered from severe leg deformities (see pictures). Through surgeries aboard the Africa Mercy both now have straight legs and are learning to walk normally.