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A donor’s gift transforms a girl’s health and well-being

POSTED November 6, 2017

A donor’s gift transforms a girl’s health and well-being

Find out how Fernanda’s sponsor stepped in to help alleviate the teen’s suffering, following her lupus diagnosis

By Enmanuel Castro, CCFC communications manager, Nicaragua

Girl Nicaragua

Whatever gift you send your sponsored child for a birthday or holiday, it truly makes them feel special. Sometimes, it even ends up helping in ways you didn’t expect. It did for the sponsor of 17-year-old Fernanda.

When Fernanda was 15, she was diagnosed with lupus, a disease in which the immune system attacks healthy cells and tissues. There’s no known cure. The diagnosis was devastating for Fernanda, a girl known in her community for being active in children’s rights workshops.

“I had swollen joints, rashes, hair loss, fever and extreme fatigue,” recalls Fernanda. “I did not attend school for five months. Walking was almost impossible. Some days I couldn’t lift a glass of water because of the pain. I wanted to go out with my friends. I wanted my life as it was in the past. I didn’t know how my family could pay for medicine.”

It was then that we alerted Fernanda’s sponsor that her original gift for school supplies would be used to buy medicine to help the family. She was eager to assist.

“The gift was very helpful for my entire family,” says Fernanda. “I receive this support twice a year. Those are the best months in the year [since my mother can’t afford the medicine].”

Now the teen has new interests and hope for the future.

“I started reading Isabel Allende and other writers on my trips for treatments,” she shares. “And, I want to be a doctor or engineer. A sponsor can change a person’s life.”

Watch Fernanda share her story…

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Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60+ years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.

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