Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Turning Life Around

My wife used to be one of the advisors in the young women’s program in our ward. I don’t remember which class she had. Actually, I think in her tenure, she did a couple of them. Laurels and Mia Maids, I think.

Anyway, I can still remember one of her girls was going through a lot of medical problems with her leg. Along with that came a lot of social and emotional issues. I don’t honestly know what the basis of the problems were, I only saw what she was going through. I do remember my wife and her cohorts in the YW put a lot of extra effort into fellowshipping this girl through her difficult times.

She ended up moving to another ward, and I heard later that she’d had to have the leg amputated.

So, the other day, I was in the dentist’s office, wishing I could have my jaw amputated, and I was reading a copy of the Salt Lake City magazine. It’s a pretty posh, high-end social rag, covering topics and activities for the well off. There was an article that talked about people doing wonderful acts of service to the community. And there was the girl’s picture. She was sitting on her couch, wearing her own prosthetic leg, holding another, and with a couple more on the couch next to her.

Apparently, current US liability laws prevent sharing of used prosthetic devices. And that bothered this girl (named Hope B). So, she founded a non-profit called “Limbs of Hope” that collects used limbs and distributes them overseas. She just recently returned from a trip to Cambodia, where she delivered some artificial limbs personally.

“When your income is $300 to $400 a year and that’s what a prosthetic limb costs, which do you choose, feeding your family or walking?” The article goes on, saying she “plays paintball, sled hockey, and softball. Last year she learned to surf and snowboard.”

Anyway, it was really cool to see her and see what she was working on. Go Hope!

Some links:
Limbs of Hope Foundation Website
Help from a young boy
Deseret News

Mark Hansen

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