Meet America. She is six years old and lives in Colombia. America was born with six toes on her left foot.  At our first day clinic, she confided in Dr. Todd Farnworth that life at school was difficult for her because the other children teased her and stomped on her extra toe. She also confessed her deep desire to be able to wear sneakers.  She came to Dr. Todd looking for an answer.

Dr. Todd spent most of his youth in school and training. Medical school is four years long. After residency in surgery and fellowship in plastic surgery your twenties are consumed by training.  Because he happened to make that choice in his youth, he had the necessary skill set to help a little Colombian girl when one day their paths would cross some years later. If life is a series of highly unlikely but possible events, this was one of the more magical ones.

Which is more incredible? That a six year old had the courage to share her painful experience with a foreign adult male physician or that Dr. Todd was willing and able to share his ability to fix her problem freely and with love.

On Rotaplast missions, these stories happen all the time. The opportunity to practice benevolence provides a gift to providers and patients alike.  These surgeries simply wouldn’t be possible without an organization like Rotaplast and the generous support of its donors.

On the last day of clinic, Dr. Todd will present a pair of sneakers the team purchased for America. It will close the loop of suffering from her birth defect and begin the next phase of her life as just a regular kid.

After all, this is what we came for.