Mother in Bolivia: 'I knew it would work out'

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Victoria’s mother knew something was wrong with her baby during her pregnancy. She said she had severe pain, worse than her previous two pregnancies. But at six months pregnant, she went to the hospital with complications and doctors delivered baby Victoria through a cesarean section.  

Victoria was born with a cleft lip, failing lungs and weighing just 1.34 pounds. “She looked like a tiny rat,” her mother said. “The doctors told me she would not survive. But I knew she would.”

Doctors gave her little hope that her daughter would live past her birthday, but Victoria’s mother never lost hope, especially when a friend told her about Operation Smile Bolivia. She called the Operation Smile office in Bolivia and learned there was an organization that could help her tiny baby. She just needed to gain healthy weight. Victoria’s mother made it her mission to get her baby healthy for the chance of surgery.

Now, more than one year after that terrifying day, Victoria has received surgery at a medical mission in Bolivia, just 30 minutes from their home, and her mother had this to say:

“She is so beautiful now. I knew it would work out. Everything did work out. Look at her.” 

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“Every child that has a facial deformity is our responsibility. If we don’t take care of that child, there’s no guarantee that anyone else will.”

- Kathy Magee, Operation Smile Co-founder and President