Dennis turned six in November 2004. In less than a year, he will have to be transferred from the “regular” children’s house to an institution for handicapped children, where he would receive no education, no personal attention, no future.
As you can guess from his sparkling eyes and a charming smile, Dennis is not an imbecile. On the contrary, he is an exceptionally bright and quick-witted boy. Like everybody else in his group, Dennis likes to play with race cars and build toy castles, paint and listen to fairy tales. His handicap is a purely physical one – his legs are affected by the Infantile Cerebral Palsy, and that’s why he was abandoned in the hospital a week after he was born. Despite gloomy prognosis, Dennis has learned to move around and even walk, he never let his disability keep him tied to the crib. Unless saved by a miracle, Dennis has no chance to lead a normal life.
Could the Institute of Clinical Rehabilitology in Tula, Russia provide a miracle for Dennis? We do not know, but it may be his last chance. Since Dennis is a citizen of Kazakhstan, his surgery would cost at least $3,000 rather than $300 for Russian citizens. For an initial consultation, someone would need to accompany him to Tula and the whole trip is estimated to be around $1,000. If Doctor Shishov agrees to operate on Dennis, he still has some hope of at least being transferred to a regular boarding-school type orphanage, getting basic education, and maybe even go on to college.
We thank Patricia from Northern California for giving Dennis this remote-control car.
01/07/09 Update: We have received an e-mail from a family in USA with a wonderful update – Dennis has found his forever family two years ago. He now goes by the name of Nick. He just turned 10 in November, and his little sister Katya (also adopted from Kazakhstan) is now 4 and a half. They get along very well. Nick and Katya love thier baby brother, Ronan, who is biologically mine (he is 18 months old). Nick is doing much better in school, and is now is 3rd grade. He had surgery on his legs in August, and has had 3 sets of casts and lots of physical therapy before, during, and after surgery (and still!). He has physical therapy and occupational therapy 3 times each a week. He is currently using a shoe spring board and an insert. He’s got a lot of special help in school, his own aid, and special classes. We are very happy for this deserving little boy and his family.