before

meet Prinscio

Country: Madagascar, Africa
Age: 3
Surgery: Orthopedic

“He smiles with his whole body,”

His parents couldn’t afford the surgery required to heal Prinscio and for the first two years of his life they exhausted the little resources they had on “healers” who couldn’t help. They became deeply frustrated and sad at their inability to cure their son, who remained delighted by life despite the shame he often felt about his gait. His mother considered his awkward movement as a blessing. “He smiles with his whole body,” she says.

When Prinscio was three, his parents learned that Mercy Ships was in Madagascar performing the exact treatment that their son desperately needed. They were overwhelmed with joy when they learned the surgery would be free.

 

A floating hospital. A chance for straight feet.

At Prinscio’s first appointment, volunteer physiotherapists explained that his club feet could be corrected by plaster casts, minor surgery, exercises and the use of night-time braces.

The bright little three-year-old became excited about the potential of walking normally. “Mamma, when my feet are fixed, I will ride a bike and play football,” Prinscio enthusiastically exclaimed. “I will be like other kids!”

After eight sessions and a series of eight double leg casts, Prinscio underwent a minor surgery called a tenotomy (tendon release) to attain the last degrees of correction in his feet.

standing proudly on straight feet

As the day approached to finally remove his casts, Prinscio was beyond excited. His mother overheard him talking to one of his friends, “Tomorrow when I come home, my feet will be just like yours!”

Today, Prinscio stands confidently, flat on the soles of his beautifully restored feet.

Mercy Ships is training others to continue treating little ones like Prinscio long after the Africa Mercy leaves.

they called her “monster”

Mariette was 30 years old when one of her children noticed she had something growing on her back. A doctor told Mariette that the mass could only be removed with surgery. She was heartbroken—her family could never afford such a costly procedure. Mariette prayed for a solution.