A Prayer From Haiti
By Holly Drake
Operation Blessing International
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Wagner survived the January earthquake that rocked Port-au-Prince—but what happened in the aftermath changed his life forever.
The 17-year-old was navigating the hazardous roads on his bicycle with his brother when they were hit by a truck as it attempted to avoid rubble left behind from the quake.
His brother died, Wagner was seriously injured in both legs, and doctors were forced to amputate his left leg just below the knee. His right leg, although intact, had to be immobilized.
Two weeks later, Wagner was healing but was unable to be released from the hospital, because he had no means of mobility or a way to get home.
But that didn’t stop Wagner from praying.
“I kept sending my prayers up to heaven,” he said.
Little did he know those prayers would be answered so quickly.
In partnership with Free Wheelchair Mission, a shipment of 550 wheelchairs arrived at Operation Blessing’s warehouse in Haiti. Together, teams assembled more than 100 wheelchairs to be distributed throughout Port-au-Prince. One of those chairs was meant for Wagner.
The team arrived at a tent hospital and made their way through the cramped ward to the very back where Wagner lay in his bed.
Through a translator, they gave Wagner the good news.
“This [wheelchair] is a gift from Jesus,” they told him.
The teenager’s timid smile slowly grew bright when he heard the news.
“Se bon [it’s good],” he said. “Without this chair, I would not have any way to function. God sent me this wheelchair and He is listening and answers prayers.”
With a little help, Wagner was soon rolling himself between the beds in the tent hospital and eventually outside into the bright sun and fresh air.
So far, Operation Blessing and Free Wheelchair Mission have distributed containers of wheelchairs in more than 12 countries, bringing the gift of mobility to thousands of people in places like Haiti, Peru, India, Ukraine, Cambodia, and Laos.
Over the next 12 months, Free Wheelchair Mission plans to donate 5,500 chairs to OBI for distribution in Haiti alone to help more quake survivors and injured persons like Wagner.
HOW YOU CAN HELP: Be a part of Operation Blessing's efforts to transform the lives of children and adults in Haiti; please make an online contribution and help us continue to reach those in need.
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