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A year ago this month, little Devaan received a second chance at life. Born in Belize with a complicated defect, he was malnourished and battling multiple infections by the time he was a month old. The resources and expertise needed to save Devaan’s life were unavailable in Belize, so World Pediatric Project rushed him and his mother, Elvira, to Richmond, Virginia.
“He was in so much pain when he arrived he couldn’t stand to be held or even lightly touched,” recalls Susan Rickman, WPP CEO. “Fortunately, volunteer surgeon Dr. David Lanning, and our partner Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, agreed to help.”
The journey to health was a long one for such a young baby struggling to hold onto life. But after many months of nutritional support and multiple surgeries to repair his birth defects, Devaan began to improve. First, it was a small smile, then it was gaining weight, and finally, giggling when he was held!
At five months old, Devaan was ready to go home to Belize and begin life anew. Several months later, Dr. Lanning had the opportunity to follow up with Devaan and Elvira during WPP’s general surgery mission to Belize.
“He is doing great,” said Dr. Lanning. “He has his whole life ahead of him now.”