Tene is 3 years old and lives in Kankan, Guinea. She was born with an amniotic band wrapped around her leg, constricting her movement and causing intense swelling.
Tene’s condition is called amniotic band syndrome, or constrictive band syndrome. Often this condition leads to amputation, especially in countries like Guinea, where medical services are limited.
Thankfully, someone was watching out for Tene. One day while she was playing outside, a passing woman named Miriam stopped to give her some candies. Noticing the strange deformation of Tene’s leg while she was trying to play with other kids broke Miriam’s heart. After becoming acquainted with her mother, Saran, Miriam learned that the family was devastated by their daughter’s condition, but nothing could be done. Tene’s mother and father had tried to find treatment, but they had no hope of affording it – they barely have enough food, only eating once a day.
Miriam returned to Conakry and asked several doctors if there was any way to treat Tene’s leg. That is how she heard about the Africa Mercy, docked in a nearby port and giving free surgeries to children in need.
“If she wasn’t treated here with Mercy Ships, she would have had this condition her whole life. She used to fall down sometimes, and her legs would only get worse…her parents were scared for her future. If she didn’t get help, maybe she wouldn’t have a very long life.”
Miriam accompanied Tene and Saran to the Africa Mercy, even providing a place for them to stay while they attended the Mercy Ships screening. Thanks to Miriam’s compassion, dedicated Mercy Ships volunteers and faithful partners, Tene received free surgery that removed the amniotic band that was wrapped around her leg!
In the hospital ward after surgery, Tene’s laughter could be heard throughout the wards, melting the hearts of patients and volunteers alike. Tene’s joy filled the entire ship with hope and laughter – and we are sharing her story hoping her joy will be shared around the world.
Because of one woman’s love and generosity, Tene found hope and healing onboard the Africa Mercy. Thanks to Mercy Partners, she is continuing to receive ongoing rehabilitation and treatment that will give her full use of her leg – soon she will be able to attend school and run and play like other children.
Without the generosity of strangers like Miriam and the faithful support of Mercy Partners, children like Tene would have no hope. Your love and generosity can give hope to more children in need, and there is no better time to join the movement – right now all new Mercy Partner gifts are being doubled by a generous Canadian donor!
Written By: Andrea Gilbert