Meet Konny and Gerkess

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Konny and his father Gerkess came to Children First Foundation from a small district in Papua New Guinea. Konny was in desperate need of surgery if he was to be able to have any chance of living a normal life.

“When Konny was born, it was a very big shock. He had a protrusion on his head, a cleft lip and palate, clubfeet and fused fingers. I couldn’t believe it. How could it be that my son could be born like this?  I felt so sad and confused. The doctors said Konny wouldn’t survive for more than 3 days.” – Gerkess

But Konny did survive. And now two years later the pair are here in Australia with the opportunity to change his life.

Gerkess made a promise to himself and to his son that he would fight, that he would do everything to find some help for Konny. He looked everywhere he could think of but, like many countries, in our region Papua New Guinea has limited medical services and the doctors there could do nothing to help Konny.

“One day we heard about an Australian doctor, who was visiting our capital city who may be able to help Konny. His name was Dr Mark Moore. We travelled to Port Morseby and after many hurdles, we finally met Dr Moore. He did what he could in our country but told us that we should bring Konny’s case to Australia. He helped me get in touch with Children First Foundation.” – Gerkess

Children First Foundation facilitates life-changing surgery in Australia for disadvantaged children from developing countries. Over the past 20 years more than 400 children just like Konny have been enabled to access the help they need.

Through the support of generous donors, volunteers, partner hospitals and health professionals these children are given a second chance. Read more about us.

Thanks to this amazing network Gerkess’s dream is now coming true. Konny has begun his life-changing journey and will be able to return home healthy and happy.

“I can’t believe how lucky we are. My dream for Konny is coming to reality. But there are many other children like Konny, who can’t get the help they need in their country and have no other place to go. If you can, I would like to ask you to please consider helping them – so they can have a chance to have a normal life, like Konny. ” – Gerkess

There are so many children, like Konny, around the world living with daily pain and suffering. These children need surgery that is not available in their own countries – surgery that if they lived in Australia, would have been carried out at birth.

At Children First Foundation we believe that where you are born should not govern your right to a healthy and happy life.

We need your help to change the lives of 400 more children like Konny. By giving one extra gift this festive season you can give the gift of hope to a father like Gerkess and the gift of a bright future to a child like Konny.

“I have not much to offer you, all I can say is thank you. On behalf of parents like me, I thank you for not giving up on our children.” – Gerkess