The work our in-country representatives do goes beyond what we can report with numbers. World Pediatric Project has a local, year-long presence in our partner countries that can make a life-or-death difference for some children – children like Chester.

Chester was born in La Mosquitia in the easternmost part of Honduras, a region of tropical rainforest that is so remote and isolated it is only accessible by water or air. He was born at home with the help of a midwife with a severe form of spina bifida. In the United States, this is usually treated in utero at 23-25 weeks of gestation but, if undetected, needs to be treated within days of birth to prevent life-threatening complications.

When Chester was born, a local organization that runs a small health center called WPP’s Honduras representative, Ileana, based in Tegucigalpa, for help.

The local health center coordinated air transportation to Hospital Escuela in Tegucigalpa, the only hospital in the country with the expertise to treat a child with this condition. Meanwhile, Ileana immediately contacted Dr. Octavio Fajardo, a neurosurgeon who has partnered with WPP teams for the last 13 years, and ensured the hospital was ready to receive Chester and his mother.

WPP’s Ileana Cerrato with Chester’s mother, Tedorica.

Chester’s mother, Tedorcia, who only speaks Misquito, a local indigenous dialect, arrived with her baby at the big city hospital knowing nobody in town and with no money, just with a mother’s determination to do anything possible to save her baby. Ileana was there to obtain diapers and food donations and visit Tedorcia in the hospital and offer support and advocacy.

This network of care and support that helps what may otherwise be insurmountable for some low-income families isn’t reflected in any monthly metrics, but truly reflects the human capital that makes WPP the unique organization that it is.

More than 1,000 children like Chester are awaiting WPP’s network of care.

(Banner image from UNESCO and used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license)