Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/4/2014 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Ten operations gives 12-year-old girl better chance of living normal life

A flesh-eating bacteria ate away at a young girl's face after she drank from a stream near her remote village in Kenya. Twelve-year-old Saline Atieno's eaten-away face made it difficult for her to speak, eat and even breathe. After living in the U.S. for a year, and undergoing10 plastic surgery operations, Saline is now able to smile with confidence - and now plans to return home to Africa.

Saline will now be enrolled in a private boarding school in Kenya, where she will receive an education, a bed to sleep in and three meals per day - all funded by the Smile Rescue Fund.

Saline will now be enrolled in a private boarding school in Kenya, where she will receive an education, a bed to sleep in and three meals per day - all funded by the Smile Rescue Fund.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/4/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Noma, plastic surgery, Kenya, girl, smile


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - New York doctor Dr. Leon Klempner carried out a series of operations to help rebuild her face over the past year. Saline is the first child to have had her life dramatically changed by the Smile Rescue Fund For Kids, which is a charity dedicated to helping children with facial deformities deemed virtually "untreatable."

Klempner, an orthodontist on the cleft palate team at Stony Brook University Hospital in Stony Brook, New York took pity on Saline's plight.

Learn how you can help the hungry -- by going here --

After making several mission trips to provide free surgeries to repair cleft palates or other facial deformities in children around the world, Klempner wanted to do more to help those children with the most severe deformities.

When she younger, Saline Atieno

When she younger, Saline Atieno's face was ravaged by a rare flesh-eating bacteria that made it difficult for her to speak, eat and even breathe.


"On every mission I've gone on there's always been one or two kids turned away because they are too severe to be able to treat and that's always bothered me," Klempner says.
Saline was only three years old when she was diagnosed with Noma. The flesh-eating bacteria develops in the mouth and ravages the faces of its victims by destroying the soft and bone tissues of the face.

"Noma attacked her face, ate through her skin, through her upper jaw, destroyed her nose and destroyed her palate.That's the medical part," Klempner said.

"The social part is she was basically a recluse, she had no friends, and she didn't go to school."

Dr. Leon Klempner, an orthodontist on the cleft palate team at Stony Brook University Hospital found

Dr. Leon Klempner, an orthodontist on the cleft palate team at Stony Brook University Hospital founded the Smile Rescue Fund for Kids to help children with facial deformities deemed "untreatable."


Klempner became aware of Saline's plight in 2010, but it took three years of fundraising and navigating bureaucratic barriers before Saline finally arrived in the U.S. for treatment last June.

She was very shy and withdrawn due to her facial condition. "We had to reconstruct a nose, an upper lip and a palate - and that was one big cavity, one big hole," Dr. Alexander Dagum, chief of the plastic and reconstructive surgery division at Stony Brook says.

As Saline's appearance began to improve, her doctors and host family noticed in both her health and self-esteem. She grew six inches taller and learned to speak English.

"Here everyone is welcoming her, telling her she is beautiful, I think that all really played a part of getting her to come out of her shell," Jennifer Crean, who hosted Saline in her home for three months, says.


Saline had her tenth major surgery - to create a nose - in April and then on May 31 she flew back to Kenya. She is now able to breathe normally, speak more clearly and eat without spilling food and drink from her mouth.

"No words can adequately express how I feel. You have not only taught me your language, and fixed my face, you have taught me how it feels to be taken care of and unconditionally loved. I never expected that. Goodbye- for now,' she told Dr. Klempner before leaving.

Saline will now be enrolled in a private boarding school in Kenya, where she will receive an education, a bed to sleep in and three meals per day - all funded by the Smile Rescue Fund.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2016
Universal:
Human Solidarity: That the aged, marginalized, and those who have no one may find–even within the huge cities of the world–opportunities for encounter and solidarity.
Evangelization: Seminarians and Novices: That seminarians and men and women entering religious life may have mentors who live the joy of the Gospel and prepare them wisely for their mission.



Comments


More Living Faith

Wherin lie the differences? Catholic v. Eastern Orthadox Watch

Image of Where do Catholics differ from Easter Orthodox(Michael Hogue)?

By Carl Bunderson (CNA/EWTN News)

With the Eastern Orthodox wrapping up their "pan-Orthodox Council" this past weekend, it might be a good time to take a look at the factors that separate Catholics from their sister Churches in the east. Vatican City, Italy (CNA/EWTN News) - The main issues of ... continue reading


Pope Francis endorsed the idea of an apology to the gay community - But many misunderstood Watch

Image of What are Catholics to think of Pope Francis' call for an apology to the LGBT community (Nigeria Motion)?

By Elise Harris (CNA)

As Pope Francis on Sunday backed the idea of apologizing to gay individuals who may feel marginalized by the Church, discussion has once again broken out over how to interpret the pontiff's words. Vatican City, Italy (CNA) - Debate flared up overnight after the Pope ... continue reading


'I felt the presence of pure love': Survivors find God in near-death experiences Watch

Image of God loves us all - and more people are recognizing that (godisreal).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

You must see what great love the Father has lavished on us by letting us be called God's children -- which is what we are! - 1 John 3:1 LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the Near Death Experience Research Foundation (NDERF), which has amassed thousands ... continue reading


How the Church can improve your life Watch

Image of Church attendance helps people live longer (girlsallaround).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Remember your leaders, who preached the word of God to you, and as you reflect on the outcome of their lives, take their faith as your model. - Hebrews 13:7 LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - God permeates the Church, which acts as a conduit to all God has to offer ... continue reading


'I was a stranger and you welcomed me'

Image of

By Tony Magliano

Over 37 years-ago when Annunciation House - a sanctuary and home of hospitality that has served over 100,000 refugees, homeless poor and undocumented workers - was started in El Paso, Texas, founding director Ruben Garcia and a few friends wanted to place themselves ... continue reading


'Prayer enables grace': Pope Francis encourages prayer Watch

Image of Pope Francis encourages prayer (CNS).

By Elise Harris (CNA/Europa Press)

On Wednesday Pope Francis gave 25 new archbishops the pallium, encouraging them to remain strong in prayer, which he said helps in staying open to God's surprises, rather than closing in on oneself. Vatican City, Italy (CNA/Europa Press) - "Prayer enables grace to open ... continue reading


'It is so heartwarming': Thai Catholics exhibit extraordinary faith Watch

Image of Thailand's ill Catholics hold tight to God's mercy (Asia News).

By Antonio Anup Gonsalves (CNA/EWTN News)

Hundreds of sick and physically challenged people marked the Catholic Church's Year of Mercy in Thailand with a special procession through the Holy Door of the cathedral in the Diocese of Chanthaburi. Chanthaburi, Thailand (CNA/EWTN News) - "As human persons our lives ... continue reading


Colorado Springs Pastor fights to keep Jesus in the city Watch

Image of Pastor fights to keep Jesus advertisements around Colorado Springs (Pinterest).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

"... all beings in the heavens, on earth and in the underworld, should bend the knee at the name of Jesus" - Philippians 2:10 LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Jesus' name is so powerful, all must bow before it.That being said, the darkness at work in Colorado ... continue reading


Sister Cecilia Maria's smile stuns Watch

Image of Sister Cecilia Maria (General Curia of the Discalced Carmelites).

By (CNA)

Pictures of a young Argentinian nun - smiling and serene though dying from a devastating battle with cancer - have erupted on social media, with thousands sharing the images and heartfelt prayers. Buenos Aires, Argentina (CNA) - Sister Cecilia Maria lived in Saints ... continue reading


'Your goodness is a place where I feel protected': Pope Francis honors Benedict XVI Watch

Image of Pope Francis spoke to Benedict XVI to say thank you.

By Elise Harris (CNA/EWTN News)

On Tuesday, Benedict XVI gave his second public speech since his final day as Pope, expressing gratitude for a lengthy priesthood and for Pope Francis' "goodness," which he said moves him deeply. Vatican City, Italy (CNA/EWTN News) - Speaking to Pope Francis and ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Daily Readings for Saturday, July 02, 2016
  • Daily Reading for Wednesday, July 6th, 2016 HD Video
  • Witness the Coming of Christ...to virtual reality
  • America has become craven, that's why Satan is winning
  • St. Bernardino Realino: Saint of the Day for Saturday, July 02, 2016
  • Wherin lie the differences? Catholic v. Eastern Orthadox
  • Psalm for the Sick HD Video

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Amos 8:4-6, 9-12
4 Listen to this, you who crush the needy and reduce the oppressed to ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:2, 10, 20, 30, 40, 131
2 Blessed are those who observe his instructions, who seek him with all ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 9:9-13
9 As Jesus was walking on from there he saw a man named Matthew sitting ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 1st, 2016 Image

St. Junipero Serra
July 1: Miguel Jose Serra was born on the island of ... Read More