Peruvian teen in Miami for genital reconstruction after rifle accident left him without a penis
And smirk at the injury if you will, but the story is that this kid from some Peruvian backwater sustains an injury that is beyond anything that doctors in his country can treat or that his family can afford to pay for, and American doctors step up and fly him and his family here at no cost to the family or our own taxpayers and fix him up so that he can have a normal life again.
Luis and his father, Roger, 41, arrived in Miami July 16 thanks to a program called International Kids Fund Wonderfund, which is run by Jackson Memorial Foundation. The charity helps foreign kids get medical treatment and surgery they can’t receive or afford in their home countries.Well he got this far, not thanks to Obamacare or anything done by big government, but by the charity of the American people. This is the kind of thing that America stands for and used to be known for world-wide, and despite those around the world who hate us, it's usually private aid organizations run by generous American people who are the first to volunteer to help those in need, be it in disasters like the Haitian earthquake, a handful of miners trapped in Chile, or just a kid like this, brought here from Peru or Iraq of Afghanistan to receive life-changing medical care that they'd likely never get otherwise. And it's not the American government that does these things as much as it is individual Americans and private groups who voluntarily give their time and expertise and often a great deal of their own money, not because they expect a reward or because the government made them do it, but because it's the right thing to do and we're that kind of people. And when I read stories like this, I can't help but love my countrymen and women even more as I pass it along. It's stuff like this that makes me proud to be an American on the Friday afternoon.
Children are treated at Holtz Children’s Hospital at University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center and money is raised through private and public donations to help cover the costs.
Luis’ treatment will cost $50,000, an expense his family could not afford on their own. Ronald McDonald House, a hostel for visiting families near Jackson, is providing them housing.
“My family is a poor family. We don’t have a lot of resources,” Roger said.
The Canelos family lives in a straw house in a village of 10,000 in the rural Peruvian region of Loreto, bordering Colombia and Ecuador. They share a parcel of land with other families where they grow yucca, plantains, corn and rice, as well as raise small chickens, for their own consumption.
Loreto is isolated from much of the country, Roger explained. Ambulances, for example, arrive by river.
“Everything is jungle out there,” Roger said.
Luis and Roger had never left their village before. Their journey to the United States began when they took a small boat bound for Mazan, a town in the same province. Next they crossed part of the Amazon to arrive in Quito, Ecuador. From there, father and son boarded a flight to Lima, where they stayed for two weeks before departing for Miami.
Roger brought with him a camera to document the trip to South Florida, a metropolis unlike his village. So far he has taken pictures of Metrorail and large homes.
“I never thought I could get this far,” Luis said.