13 Sep Our first surgery in Senegal
In case you missed it, Wednesday 10th September marked the start of surgeries in Senegal, onboard the world’s largest charity hospital ship, the Africa Mercy. Mercy Ships first surgical patient was a two-year-old boy called Saliou who was born with a cleft lip.
At best a cleft lip is a disfiguring condition but it can mean that infants struggle to feed and it can often lead to malnutrition and sometimes death; despite the desperate family’s best efforts. This was so nearly the case for Baby Junior, who we met in Cameroon (click here to read his story).
Thankfully, Saliou’s condition did not prevent him from gaining weight as he grew. Our first surgery in Senegal will transform Saliou’s life. Sadly, it is often the case that people suffering from cleft lips are mocked and bullied. Thanks to Mercy Ships supporters, Saliou won’t experience this and will be able to live a normal childhood. This is what Mercy Ships supporters provide. They transform peoples’ lives. With luck, Saliou will never even remember he had a cleft lip.
UK volunteer anaesthetist Sarah Kwok was part of the team who performed the free surgery:
Saliou before free surgery onboard the Africa Mercy
Dr Gary Parker on the ward with Saliou