Here is Victor's story as told by his mother .. .
Hello, my name is Gloria and I am Victor’s mom. My son is 3 years old and got burned by the overturning of a kettle in 2011, when he was only one year old. This occurred at our home in Villa Alemana, and after being treated at three medical centers in the area, we moved to San Borja Arriaran Hospital in Santiago, where he stayed for two months.
When Victor was discharged, I reached COANIQUEM by mail, receiving an immediate response to my request of admitting my son as a rehabilitation patient. Since July 4th 2011, we and the wonderful medical team have been giving our best for my son’s full recovery. It's been a long process and there is still a long road ahead, but thanks to COANIQUEM, my son lives a completely normal life.
Now, two years after that fateful day, we attend every three months to the Rehabilitation Center of Santiago. We stay at Casabierta totally free, which is great, because it would be very hard to afford a place to stay. Besides, living with the staff and other moms is a great opportunity as we support each other sharing our experiences. There is a hospital school, so children do not miss classes during their treatment and they are not left behind in their studies. There are even workshops for parents where we learn handcrafting, sewing and prepare our traditional food.
It is very rewarding to share with all the amazing people who work in COANIQUEM. The staff’s huge heart and passion for children is noticed and appreciated infinitely.
. . . . As many as 8,000 children per year live stories such as this. Your support makes their continuing care possible.
Azul is leaving her treatment at COANIQUEM Burned Children Center in Santiago, Chile, to move on to a normal life.
She came from Argentina for treatment in 2004, having suffered a severe burn on her hand. She had put her hand on the family's oven door. Her treatment over the years consisted of surgery, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and psychological/social help for her and her mother. Children come to COANIQUEM periodically, typically spending 3-4 days, then returning home. During theses visits, Azul and her mother stayed in Casabierta, the free housing provided for these stays. Azul and her mother also received free meals, and Azul had school lessons provided by her own teachers in Argentina.
Azul is just one of the many success stories of COANIQUEM. Over 100,000 children of the Americas have received treatment since the founding of the center in 1979.
See the attached report that was sent to those who had helped support Azul's treatment through contributions to COANIQUEM Burned Children Foundation.
A new survey comparing the incidence of childhood burns with a similar survey conducted in 1993 in Chile shows a decrease of 46%. This means that 80,000 fewer children have suffered burns each year in recent years.
Dr Jorge Rojas, President of COANIQUEM in Santiago said, "To COANIQUEM these indicators are the result of the effectiveness of the Corporation's work in the field of burn prevention during the past 30 years, along with the progress of the socioeconomic status of the population..."
The institution has trained in prevention over 14,000 instructors throughout Chile in 30 years, with the support of the Ministry of Health and the Chilean Safety Association. Since 1998, they have extended this prevention training to many other countries in South and Central America and the Caribbean.
Some of the important campaigns include "Alto al Fuego" with the law #19680 that bans the sale of fireworks in Chile; the campaign for proper use of electric kettles; the campaign to prevent overturning of stoves, and the "Safe Kite" campaign to prevent electrical burns. Additionally, in 2012-13 1569 students from the institue DuocUC visited homes in rural areas teaching COANIQUEM's preventive techniques to the families.
We will continue to provide free rehabilitation treatment to those children who do suffer severe burns, but we would rather prevent those burns!
Your contribution will help us continue both our treatment and our prevention work. Thank you!
In May of this year Azul and Sebastian completed their rehabilitation treatment at COANIQUEM in Santiago, Chile, leaving lives dominated by pain and disfigurement and entering ones full of hope for the future.
Their experiences are typical of children whose treatment lasts for years, as their bodies grow and scar tissue must be monitored.
All treatment is provided free of charge. Treatment includes surgery as needed, psychological and occupational therapy, housing for a parent during the child's treatment, and on-site schooling.
Children from throughout Chile and other Latin American countries come to COANIQUEM for this special treatment.
See the pictures and reports attached to learn of the success stories made possible by COANIQUEM.
COANIQUEM Burned Children Foundation supports the treatment of severely burned children from throughout Latin America. As many as 8,000 children per year receive free rehabilitation treatment at the three centers in Chile.
Recognizing the value of preventing childhood burns, COANIQUEM has long conducted educational programs in Chile. Our program is now launching a campaign in four Central American countries. Partially supported by the government of Chile, UNICEF, and our foundation, and using material developed by the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, the prevention campaign will be conducted in Guatemala, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, and Costa Rica.
Childhood burns in the developing regions are usually caused by household accidents such as hot water or oil, electrical shocks, hot irons or stoves, etc. Children and parents can learn how to avoid many of these accidents.
By supporting COANIQUEM, our donors will not only be helping those children already suffering the results of burns, they will also help reduce the incidence of burns. Experience during this campaign will be used for more extensive prevention activities throughout Latin America.
We love helping those children who need treatment, but how much better to prevent this childhood trauma! Join the effort!
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