CURE launches clubfoot eradication project

By December 6, 2006

USA (MNN) — For whatever reason, one out of every 500 children born around the world today is born with a clubfoot. Because treatment begins at birth in the western world, it’s virtually unseen. However, in second and especially third world nations it’s something they live with the rest of their lives.

CURE International wants to change that. They’ve launched CURE Clubfoot Worldwide. The executive director of the program is Andrew Mayo. “We really have within our grasp the ability to eliminate clubfoot as a disability in the world, especially the developing world, but partnering with physicians and other organizations in each country to create a network of treatment centers.”

These treatment centers will use proven non-surgical techniques to treat clubfoot, says Mayo. “The exciting thing about the non-surgical method is it doesn’t require a doctor. It’s essentially a method of treating or casting a child, generally under two years old, once a week for about six to 10 weeks. The treatment method can be taught to a physical therapist, a nurse or medical technician.”

While helping children physically is the main goal, sharing the Gospel is equally as important, says Mayo. “In many countries, parents think that a child born with a clubfoot is cursed. We’re using local pastors, people like that, to help do that counseling. And, they build relationships and then can share the Gospel.”

The goal is to have 100 countrywide programs in 10 years. But, Mayo says they need help to do it. “We need both partners in those countries as well as individuals in the United States that are willing to fund the treatment. We can completely cure a child of clubfoot for about $150.” This treatment will allow these people to become productive members of society.

According to Mayo, the need is great, because outside the west there are only three countrywide programs. They already have programs in Malawi and Kenya. They hope to launch new programs in Ethiopia, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Cambodia and Afghanistan very soon.

Mayo is asking Christians to pray, “That God continues to bless this, to open doors in countries that are closed to the Gospel in other ways, but are eager to have us working and treating their children.”

If you’d like to sponsor a child, click here.

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