Project #11919

Sponsor the Care of a Latin American Burned Child

by COANIQUEM Burned Children Foundation
Happy Children in Renovated Facility
Happy Children in Renovated Facility

COANIQUEM BCF has received a grant of $190,000 from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.
Combined with a $10,000 match from a generous donor, we have a $200,000 project to renovate and expand the Casabierta facility at COANIQUEM in Santiago, Chile.
There will be additional rooms for child patients and their parents, more space for international visitors receiving training, and some safety upgrades.
Additionally, there will be some enhancements to the entrance and surrounding play area.

Renovation will begin in March 2017 and take about 3 months.

This project is essential to maintain the facility that allows children and their guardians to stay comfortably and safely when the child needs serious surgery or treatment that cannot be done on an out-patient basis.

The children and their parents get free room and board during their stay.  The children also keep up with their school work through individualized work with the state-authorized school on site.

See the attached architect's drawing of the children playing happily as they continue their medical treatments.

The Packard Foundation is helping through this facility enhancement.

We hope that YOU will help with the treatment costs of these children with you contribution to our Global Grant project!

The special holistic approach to rehabiliting child burn victims has been implemented in Chile since 1979.  To date, more than 120,000 children have received this treatment at the centers in Santiago, Antofagasta, and Puerto Montt, Chile.

In recent years, however, COANIQUEM has implemented an International Training Program in Latin American and Caribbean countries -  to give children in this broader geographic area the benefit of better lives.

COANIQUEM's Training Program has been implemented in 20 countries.  315 medical professionals and technicians have been trained through distance-learning and a one-month internship at COANIQUEM in Santiago.  These individuals have transferred the model of care to burn centers in their own countries, resulting in the treatment of an estimated 120,000 more children.

The participating countries have been Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Dom. Republic, Uruguay, Venezuela, and other parts of Chile.

The other international outreach has been an International Prevention Program.  In seven countries of the region, staff members of COANIQUEM have trained professionals of health centers and elementary schools to promote the prevention of childhood burns.  Special non-language-specific and colorful materials have been developed that are aimed at young children's safety practices.

COANIQIUEM's leadership in both the treatment of children who have suffered severe burns and the prevention of those burns continues to benefit thousands of children each year!

Cheerful in spite of injuries!
Cheerful in spite of injuries!

The comprehensive care provided free of charge by COANIQUEM for burned children is unique.

In order to meet the needs of these young burn victims, Dr. Rojas-Zegers and his staff pioneered an approach called “integrated Healing” — a holistic program that includes:

Physical healing, including plastic surgery, scar compression and rehabilitation using exercises and special devices.

Psychological treatment of trauma, posttraumatic stress disorder and anxiety disorders for both the children and the families.

Education provided to school aged children by trained teachers, at bedside when required by the extent of the treatment.

Spiritual support to help the children develop the inner strength and resolve necessary to deal with their injuries.

While children are being treated at the Rehabilitation Center, COANIQUEM provides teachers so that they do not fall behind in their studies. The  children and their parents receive free room and board at Casabierta, one of the facilities of COANIQUEM.

In addition to medical services, COANIQUEM develops and circulates burn prevention literature. Also, in cooperation with government agencies and the private sector, COANIQUEM organizes and conducts campaigns to increase public awareness of fire hazards and burn prevention activities.

The atmosphere at the Santiago facility is positive and cheerful, in spite of the severity of the children's injuries.

See the smiling face!

Please help keep her smiling!

Eric 2016
Eric 2016

This month COANIIQUEM celebrates thirty-seven years of rehabilitation treatment for the burned children of Latin America.  More than 120,000 patients have been treated in the three centers in Chile  (Santiago, Antofagasta, Puerto Montt), and 315 professionals from 20 other Latin American and Caribbean countries have been trained at COANIQUEM to implement the holistic approach in their home burn units.  That outreach has resulted in the treatment of another 100,000 children.  Currently, 8,000 children are treated each year in Chile, and 400 surgeries are performed.

Casabierta, the facility that provides housing, food, and education, also celebrated an anniversary  -  20 years of being a home for the children that come from distant regions or abroad.  Some patients (and a parent) stay for a few days, but others need to stay for longer perionds, like Eric, who had surgery with a tissue expander and will be staying for two to four months until the new extra skin grows enough to replace the adjacent scar.  (See Eric's picture attached.)

All of these services are provided free of charge to the children and their families.  The average annual cost per child is US$1,000.

COANIQUEM also continues its efforts toward the prevention of childhood burns, with educational programs in schools and communities and with activities to influence relevant legislation.  For example, COANIQUEM played a key role in outlawing fireworks, resulting in a significant reduction in burns from this cause.  Similar efforts have been aimed at laws to secure stoves and to increase the safety of hot water bottles.

Among the many rehabilitation programs provided free of charge to the child burn victims at the COANIQUEM treatment center in Santiago, Chile, is the opportunity to express themselves through art.

The art activities are also often part of the physical and/or occupational therapy treatments received by the children.

COANIQUEM's philosophy is to provide a holistic approach to the child's recovery  - 

          Necessary medical or surgical treatment as needed

         Psychological treatment as needed to help the child adjust to his/her possible limitations and to possible social problems because of disfigurement

          Family counseling because the whole family is affected by one child's tragedy.  The parents are also advised as to how to prevent additional accidents

          Physical and occupational therapy to increase mobility or better use of affected body parts

          Continued monitoring of the child's healing through years of physical growth.  Some children remain in periodic treatment for as many as 15 years, requiring repeated surgical procedures and counseling as their bodies mature.

           Spritual support for those children whose families request it.  The Center has a welcoming chapel available for the children and their families.

          The holidays provide an opportunity for the children to express their gratitude to those donors who help support their treatment.

           Enjoy the attached art and greetings from Eliset and Mirko!


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Organization Information

COANIQUEM Burned Children Foundation

Location: Alameda, CA - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Carolyn Schuetz
Alameda, CA United States

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