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The machine that saved Valentin

  • June 29, 2018
April Stumme
April Stumme

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On a sunny Guatemalan day, high up in a tree, a little boy was fighting for his life.

He had climbed up the rough bark with no problem, but now he couldn’t find a foothold. He twisted and strained to regain his balance, but he knew it was too late.

In a last-ditch effort, Valentin gripped the branch as hard as he could with both sweaty hands. But his fingers slipped, and he began to fall.

He hit the ground — hard. The spinal damage he suffered would affect him for the rest of his life.

It’s been almost 10 years since Valentin’s life was changed that day. But although the bruises have faded and the cuts have healed, his body has never been the same.

For years, Valentin has struggled to keep himself healthy. The accident left him unable to walk and damaged other organs, sending his whole body into chaos. Desperate to find healing, Valentin visited a nearby clinic. Doctors there diagnosed him with severely damaged kidneys.

The news he received scared him to his core. Valentin needed dialysis. He was facing chronic kidney failure.

While dialysis is easily accessible for most people in the Western world, Guatemala is a different story. Hospitals in this predominantly poor country are not properly stocked. Many are missing basic supplies and beds for patients.

Valentin knew that finding a dialysis machine near him might be impossible. He also knew without dialysis treatment, he would die. His situation seemed hopeless.

But then compassionate donors provided an entire shipping container’s worth of dialysis machines! These machines will be used to equip a new clinic and several hospitals. They will provide lifesaving treatment for dozens of people like Valentin every day.

In fact, there are now twice as many dialysis machines helping to save lives in Guatemala.

Lifesaving supplies are truly a lifeline for impoverished people around the world. Not only are individuals being saved, but quality of life is being improved — all because of generous donors who care.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can be part of delivering these essential lifesaving supplies to people in need, click the link below.

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