Mafoudiya’s Story:

​When Mafoudiya was born, her mother, Mabinty, wasn’t able to fully enjoy her new baby girl’s bright eyes or sweet smile because she was consumed with worry. Her daughter was born with a cleft lip, and in their village there was no access to the medical help they needed to repair her smile.

As Mafoudiya grew from a baby to a toddler, other children would make fun of her, even calling her a demon because of her cleft lip. This broke her mother’s heart, but without access to surgery, Mabinty had no choice but to hope and pray for a miracle.

When she heard that there was a hospital ship sailing into the capital city of Guinea, she knew this was her one chance to find help for her daughter. After a long journey from their village to the city, mother and daughter waited to be seen by a team of medical professionals from Mercy Ships.

But long hours and longer lines left them coming back day after day, hoping to be seen. When a Mercy Ships nurse noticed little Mafoudiya standing with her mother, he immediately pulled them inside to be seen by a screening team. Now, what had seemed impossible just hours before became a reality, and Mafoudiya was given a surgery date!

After volunteer surgeons repaired her cleft lip, Mafoudiya’s radiant smile shone even brighter than before, and Mabinty was overjoyed that her little girl was finally healed.

Back home in their village and with their family, Mafoudiya and her mother are so thankful for the miracle they received.

“I waited for this for so long,” Mabinty said. “I am so grateful…and so happy.”