Gaza Children's Heart Surgery


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Gaza Children
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Going Home

Posted on Tue, 11/13/2018 - 22:36 by Nate Geer

With all the bad news coming out of Gaza recently, it was a blessing to see this beautiful and precious little baby with his smiling Grandma. He came to Israel around three weeks ago as a critical case, and it was such a joy to return him home again happy, healthy and not needing oxygen. When we first saw him he was fussing, but after Diana picked him up and began to hold him he settled right down and was happy and calm the whole trip. Please pray that amidst the chaos and violence of this region, we can continue to bless the most vulnerable and innocent involved in this conflict.

A Joyful Day

Posted on Wed, 11/07/2018 - 13:19 by Lindsay Martin
Today, Sophie and I had the pleasure of heading to Wolfson hospital to greet all of our Gaza families coming for the clinic. However, before the families arrived we were able to visit with two children who had come for surgeries and were now recovering in the Children's Ward, Adam and Abd El Hameed. 
 
Adam is doing well after surgery and his mother was very happy to greet us and chat with us in the bit of English that she knows. Adam was happily enjoying his milk and soon fell asleep. Adam will hopefully be discharged in the next day or two. We praise God for his swift healing. 
 
 
He was sharing a room with precious little Abd El Hameed, who arrived just over two weeks ago as an urgent case. Today was his first full day outside of the ICU and his grandmother was very joyful. Abd El Hameed is such a small little boy and is still receiving oxygen. We pray for continued healing and no complications as he just begins his journey in life. 
 
 
Soon after, all the families for the clinic arrived and we met them in the Echo department. It was a joyful greeting as Yousef said hello to all of the parents and began the process of getting them checked in. From there, Sophie and I began to introduce ourselves to the families and put faces to the names. 
 
It is such a blessing to meet these precious children, many of whom were returning after surgery. 
 
There were six children who received permission to come to today's clinic. All of the families were very friendly and open, thankful to have such amazing care for their children. 
 
We met with Inji who has received her surgery and was coming for her checkup. She is a very sweet little girl who seems to love her mother very much, always wanting to be by her side. Her echo results were good and she will return in several months to check again. We praise God for such good results. 
 
We also met precious Yazen who was warmly dressed after a cold, rainy morning in Gaza. Her mother was very open and happy to chat with Sophie and I as well as we could. Yazen enjoyed some storytelling by Sophie and also popping bubbles with her mother's help. She also came for a follow-up echo and received word that she is doing better. Praise be to God for this precious life that has been saved. She will return in a few months as the doctors continue to monitor her. 
 
 
Another child returning after surgery was sweet little Kenan. He received his surgery just over a month ago and his father was very happy to return today, glowing at the health of his son. Kenan was loved by all of us volunteers, finding himself the center of many pictures. His checkup also went well and will return in the future for another echo. His father was very friendly with all the staff, greeting them and speaking some of the English he knows, and helping the other families get connected to the internet. We thank God for Kenan's recovery and pray blessings over his precious life. 
 
 
We also met a new patient today, Khadh, who was very shy upon her arrival. Khadh has a complicated situation with her heart, which the doctors were able to evaluate today. They plan to invite her for surgery in the next two months. Her and her mother were very sweet and friendly, conversing with Sophie as she practiced her Arabic. Khadh is a sweet soul and we pray for God's hand to sustain her as she waits for surgery. We look forward to the next time we will see her and pray for full healing. 
 
 
Marwa also returned to the clinic today. Her and her mother are quite comfortable at the hospital, as they have been many times. Marwa went straight to the echo room when they arrived. Her echo results were good but the doctors would like to continue to monitor her closely so she will need to come every two months for checkups. We didn't get much time to spend with Marwa and her mother as they were constantly moving about around the hospital and in different checkups. However, her and her mother were very sweet and friendly. Many of these families spend a lot of time talking with Amar on the phone and they were very glad to meet his wife. It was a blessing to see the smile of Marwa's mother's face as she realized I was Amar's wife and being able to put faces to names she often only hears of. We praise God for this sweet family and pray for continued strength and joy for Marwa. 
 
The last child we met with was Salaheldeen and his mother. Salaheldeen is a very shy little boy, not speaking much, but very attentive. He was constantly watching everyone and everything around him. We spent some time drawing with him and talking about different shapes in Arabic, until he was taken into his echo. His mother expressed concerns about his cognitive development, mentioning it may not be the same as others. May we pray for this precious boy, for healing not only of his heart but also his entire body, that his family may see that there is One God, One Healer for their precious son. Praise God that Salaheldeen's echo report was good and he is healing well. 
 
 
It was a very joyful day with the families today. It was nice to be reminded today of the importance of the work that the doctors are doing with the families in Gaza. Especially as an expecting mother, my heart can understand the cries of these families as they hear that their child needs heart surgery but there is nowhere to go. I am so thankful that we get to be a part of this work God is doing and for the doctors who care so deeply and joyfully for these precious children. 
 
We look forward to the next clinic and seeing more of these precious children of God. 
 

Luay and Safi

Posted on Tue, 10/30/2018 - 18:34 by Georgia Willcocks
Magda and I met Luay and his dad and Safi with his grandma at the border this morning. Luay is 3 years old and Safi is 15, and what a joy to be with both of these families! They patiently waited for over an hour for a third family! I really admired their patience and willingness to help each other out, and it seemed like there was no worries at all that the clock was ticking on. It seemed like care for the other families was really their priority, and there was just no sense of grumpiness, due to having to wait for another family. 
 
 
Safi was polite and helpful with cheeky little Luay, who wanted to try his luck at driving the van! And Luay's father helped to find Leen and her mum. They really were lovely families.
 
Safi was admitted to the hospital quickly, for a catheterisation. However, later in the evening, we had a call to say that the cath needs to be rescheduled. So unfortunately for him, this needs to be rearranged. 
 
 
And it was good news for happy Luay! He has come a long way with his health; Yousif remembers when he was really so unwell, but praise God, you would not know that to watch him play and chat now! And his echo showed a good result; he will need a follow up in a month.
 
Praise God for a fun day with these families, and we pray that God will breathe his spirit onto these families. 
 

A Full Clinic!

Posted on Tue, 10/23/2018 - 10:45 by Co-authored

Today we went to Wolfson for the Gaza clinic excited to see the seven children who will come today. The families had a very long journey because of problems on the way, but finally, they came! Now the waiting room was completely full. The medical team and we were were very glad to see them, and although we did not know many words in Arabic, we had a good time talking and playing with the children and their guardians.

Here is a brief summery of each of the beautiful children. Follow the links to learn more about the heart and the different defects these precious kids struggle with. 

The youngest child, Aisha, a little baby only 21 days old, slept very peacefully when she arrived. Aisha is here for an evaluation and has Double Outlet Right Ventricle.

Fitoon is a lovely 4 year-old girl with Atrial Septal Defect and Patent Ductus Arteriosus. Today she is at the hospital for an evaluation and also maybe a catheterization.

Bashir is a happy 8 year-old boy with lots of different heart problems (Transposition of the Great Arteries, Ventricular Septal Defect, and Pulmonary Stenosis to name a few). He had already had two surgeries - a Glenn in 2011 and a pacemaker this year. Today he is here for a follow up.

Ellin, a sweet, little girl of 9 months, is here today for a follow-up. Her diagnosis is Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return and she had a repair in March already.

Mohammed Fara is a very sweet, but also shy boy at 7 years. His diagnoses are Tetralogy of Fallot and Major Aortopulmonary Collateral Arteries, and he had a catheterization in 2012. Today he is here for a re-evaluation about the future.

Two year-old Mohammed struggles with PAIS, but had plenty of surgeries in 2016 and 2017 and today he is only here for a follow-up.

The oldest of the group is Nour, an 8 year-old girl. She has Transposition of the Great Arteries and Ventricular Septal Defect. She is here today for an evaluation. When we asked for a photo she was so shy that she wanted to color when we took the photo. A very sweet girl.

Please pray for good results for all these lovely babies. 

Written by: Diana Zarrate and Malene Stoltenberg

Huge Gaza Day

Posted on Tue, 10/16/2018 - 10:42 by Co-authored

The echo area was completely full this morning. Ten kids and their guardians arrived from Gaza for echo appointments. Early in the morning, two of us started to pick them up. The age range spans from one month to 16 years. Our youngest patient was Akram, an urgent kid. He came with his mother straight from the hospital in Gaza.

It was quite moving to see the deep and caring love of his mother for him. She waited patiently for his echo and was so kind and thankful. At the end of our visit, we escorted her and other mothers to the ward. There, he is waiting for his surgery. It is a really hard time for his mom and she really needs our prayer.

Another wonderful patient was our little Mohammed. He is about ten months old and came only for an echo. Especially Adam quickly became friends with him. It seemed like he does not really understand the whole process going on around him. But he liked that he got so much attention. The echo went well and Mohammed could go home.

Five other kids had to stay at the hospital for coming up surgeries and catherizations. We hope that the doctors are wise and the treatment will help the kids. Please pray for those little bodies to receive full strength and health.

Written by: Johanna Ebert and Svea Conzelmann

Gaza Clinic

Posted on Tue, 10/09/2018 - 05:34 by Julius Barguil

Today I had the great opportunity to be with the Gaza families and children at Wolfson hospital. It was not easy to communicate with them because of my little Arabic skills but I was supporting Mr. Yousif today.   

We first met a beautiful baby girl named Arwa. She is just 8 months. Then we saw a baby boy just 9 months old, named Kenan, he was operated last September 26th. His operation was very good, but he needs to stay hospitalized waiting for some water to reduce in his heart.

Then 5 families arrived from Gaza border with their children. Some came for the first time some other came for follow-up and perform new echos after their surgeries.

I was so glad to meet Dr. Bashir, their cardiologist, coming with them from Gaza. I had a great time with the kids. Mohammed, Hamdy and Abdallah loved my Colombian hat and they were so happy as cowboys wearing it. 

They Belong to the Lord

Posted on Tue, 10/02/2018 - 21:17 by Miriam Svensson
Eight children were on the schedule for this weeks Gaza clinic, three babies and five school children. In the waiting room I tried to make contact with some of them. 
 
 
Riman was a ten year old girl with a long braid and a beautiful smile. 9 years ago she had heart surgery and now she  came for an echo check-up. She had learned a little bit of English in school and whispered a few words to me. 
 
Another girl about the same age was Sebah. She was quite shy and didn't like to have her picture taken. I was told she had been car sick on the way to the hospital, so I understood why she didn't look very happy.
 
 
Suliman was a cheerful boy, nine years old. He didn't like to just sit and wait, so he walked around in the waiting area, curiously looking at everything. He was very happy to have his picture taken and give me high fives.
 
The babies were weighed first and then given a sedative so they would sleep during the examination. Sweet little Jamila slept quietly when I said hello to her grandmother, who told me that her name was Jamila too. Also Ibrahim and Arwa slept peacefully in the arms of their carers. 
 
 
After having her echo done, we were told that 8 months old Arwa was going to be admitted. She will have a catheterization done to close an open structure in her heart that is causing her problem. I followed Arwa and her mother to the children's ward.
 
 
Now she was awake and alert, she even gave me a couple of smiles before we said goodbye. 
 
Thank you for praying with us for these prescious children. They belong to the Lord! We pray that He will bless them with good health and that they will get to know His great love for them.
 

Kenan and Inji

Posted on Mon, 09/17/2018 - 01:08 by Anna Kaufmann
 
Sophie, Yousif and I went to the Erez Border to pick Kenan and his father up. While driving back to Wolfson hospital, Yousif and Kenan's Dad had good conversations. At the hospital, it took us a little while to find the father with his baby, but then we finally found them and stayed for little time. The doctors came and checked Kenan so he will be able to get his surgery the next days.
 
 
We also visited Inji for a short time to see how she is. The sweet girl was laying in her bed with lot of cables around her, but she looked stable. Please pray with us that Kenan will get his surgery soon and that the surgery will be successful. Please also pray for Inji that she gets better.
 

Quality Time with the Gaza Families

Posted on Sun, 09/16/2018 - 23:49 by Miriam Svensson
 
I went to Wolfson Hospital today together with Yosef, to visit the Gaza children that are currently admitted. The first one I met was Loaj, a sweet and chubby 3-year-old boy. His father explained to us that he has had his second heart surgery. Loaj was a bit shy towards me in the beginning, but after a while he opened up. We played with some toys and he laughed and chatted to me in arabic. 
 
 
We also spent some time with the mother of 2-year-old Inji. She was waiting in the ward while her prescious child was in surgery. We did our best to communicate a little, although we didn't have a common language. I could tell she was worried, and I tried to give her support and comfort. 
 
Next to her bed tiny baby Amar, only one month old, rested together with his grandmother. He had surgery only a few days after he was born. They were waiting to be discharged to go home to their family. A little while after lunch they were ready to go, and Loaj was also being discharged. 
 
 
Just before we left we got the news thet little Inji was out of surgery. Her mother was very relieved and happy as she said goodbye to us.
 
As I drove towards Erez with Loaj and Amar, both the children fell asleep. Suheil talked to the father and the grandmother. I thought about what a privilege it is to spend time with these families, and how the Lord can make it possible to communicate without common words, through love. Please pray with us for these children and their families, that they will they will grow in health and in knowledge of the Heavenly Father who loves us all.
 

Meeting Inji

Posted on Wed, 09/12/2018 - 03:09 by Sophie Harvie

It was wonderful to meet Inji and her mother today as we accompanied the pair to Wolfson hospital. Inji was to be admitted with the expectation that she will likely have her surgery tomorrow.


It was a real delight to have Suhail with us today as this allowed us to communicate together with Inji's mother. We learned that Inji is from a very large family and her father was one of 26 children! Inji herself sat babbling excitedly away in the car seat and her joy was contagious.

God really went before us at Wolfson. The nurses were very kind and a bed was ready for Inji on our arrival. After a few initial checks it was time for us to leave. We were able to share a prayer with Inji and her mother before we went. Please join us in praying that Inji's surgery goes really well tomorrow and that she and her family know the love of our one true God.

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