You saved Willie's life!
You see those smiles?
They’re because of our amazing family of Children First supporters.
Thanks to kind and caring Australians, Willie is out of hospital, slowly learning to eat again, and smiling for all the world to see.
It’s hard to imagine this is the same little boy who, only a few months ago, was dangerously malnourished. A huge tumour on the side of his face was stopping him eating.
Willie was critically ill – and getting worse every day.
None of us knew if he was going to make it.
Yet our wonderful Children First supporters didn’t give up on him.
We reached out to you because of your compassion for children in desperate need…
…and were deeply moved by your generosity.
Because of your kindness, Willie was able to have the life-saving surgery he so urgently needed. In fact, he was able to have three procedures to help save his life – and is now recovering well.
His Mum, Wilma shares:
'I was so scared of Willie’s tumour – I thought I would lose him.
I thought he was going to die.
And now look at how well he is doing! He has a whole new future now.
And I can see Willie’s beautiful smile again.’
Wilma is so grateful for everything you’ve done through Children First to help bring Willie back to her again:
'Everyone has done so much for us: the hospitals, the doctors, the Retreat.
I really want to thank the people who gave money so that Willie could have so many operations’.
Willie still has a long journey ahead of him – a journey that will see him having to return for more surgery in the coming years.
But for now, Willie is back to eating (soft foods!) and playing with the other children. He even enjoyed a very gentle game of soccer at our Retreat with Garisha!
Willie now needs time to get strong and grow.
We all know there is no better place to do that than at home, surrounded by loved ones. Because of your care, Willie is almost well enough to do this and head home to Vanuatu.
Please be assured that we’ll continue to pass on your care to Willie back in Vanuatu. We have health and nutrition plans in place and have stocked up on supplements with the help of Willie's nutritionist.
In addition, our wonderful in-country partner, Jinny, will regularly check-in with Willie and Wilma, and monitor his progress and wellbeing until he is big and strong enough to come back for his next surgery.
As you’d understand, Willie and Wilma are really looking forward to going home. Wilma shares:
‘We can’t wait to get back home to family and friends again. They will be so excited to see Willie looking so well.
Willie can speak again now and is back to being cheeky!’
Judging by Wilma's smile and protective hug, I don't think she minds his cheekiness being back!
You change so many lives with your care and kindness through Children First Foundation.
For Willie, you did even more.
You saved his life.
What an extraordinary gift you gave to him, to his mum Wilma, and to all his family and friends.
It was so emotional when Willie left Vanuatu. He was in such a critical condition. His loved ones didn't know if they would see him again.
Imagine the celebrations when Willie gets home!
Thank you for your wonderful compassion and generosity. You’re a life-saver – literally!