After having to pause our lifesaving heart procedures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re finally able to continue bringing children to Israel for treatment. However, we urgently need your support, as the disruption cost us valuable time.
Queen, a four-year-old girl from Zambia, was born with a congenital heart defect. After being scheduled to board a flight to Israel to undergo life-saving procedures, COVID-19 broke out. "When they told me you are not going, I wanted to collapse,” said Queen’s mother.
Now that SACH is able to resume activities, Queen finally underwent life-saving heart surgery at the Wolfson Medical Center where she will now have a second chance at life.
Seven children accompanied by their mothers, a nurse, and Dr. Ziwa, who is training to become Zambia's first pediatric cardiac surgeon, recently arrived in Israel. After months of waiting, these children will finally have access to the cardiac treatments they need to survive.
Arena is one of nine Palestinian children currently
under our care at Wolfson Medical Center.
“When your child is sick you think about it day and night. Here, I know they work from the heart and I am so grateful for the care my daughter has finally received.” - Annas, Arena's father.
Hanna, a five-year-old from Ethiopia, is one of the many children from Ethiopia who have now been able to travel to Israel for life-saving heart surgery. Hanna suffers from a ventricular septal defect, also known as "a hole in the heart".
“I am so hopeful now. I’ve been waiting for this chance for my child. I’ve seen other children who have been healed and now we are here to heal her. This was my prayer.” - Masarat, Hanna's mother
We're excited that children from Ethiopia in need of life-saving cardiac procedures have arrived in Israel. The children are now undergoing COVID-19 testing ahead of their procedures.
Under normal circumstances, 30 children would have received life-saving heart procedures in the time we were unable to operate.
Over the past few weeks, while we could not admit new patients, we continued to treat children from Gaza, the West Bank, and Africa who were already in our care when the Israeli travel ban went into effect. Together, they healed and many have now been able to return home as new children are arriving.
Hamza, a two-year-old from Ramallah who received life-saving heart surgery by SACH in February, was separated from his mother after she returned home briefly and had to remain there due to COVID-19 lockdown measures. Hamza became like an adoptive child to the entire Israeli medical team in charge of his care. Last week, Hamza had the opportunity to return home, accompanied by two of his personal physicians.
"His story is amazing," says Dr. Racheli, a senior physician in the pediatric intensive care unit at Wolfson Medical Center. "It is a story about a medical team who fought tirelessly for the life of a critically ill child, a story of a brave little boy who survived against all odds, and a story of people, of human beings, helping each other regardless of their origin and religion. This is the story of Save a Child's Heart.”
With the cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian Authorities, Lama,
a six-month-old from Gaza, received emergency surgery for her heart condition. Lama was the first child treated when Save a Child’s Heart resumed heart procedures and is now recovering in the pediatric ICU.
“I was very nervous to come here at the beginning, it is my first time in Israel, but everything is perfect now. My baby is saved, and the doctors are taking care of everything”,
- Lama’s mother
Save a Child's Heart was joined by the cast and crew of Fauda for a virtual event, Building Bridges & Telling Stories, where creator Avi Issacharoff discussed SACH's life-saving work.