Wilmer's New Life
The Adventure of a Lifetime
March 21, 2012 - Guatemala
Recently, one of the pequeños at Casa San Andres received the opportunity to travel abroad. However, he is not travelling to the United States but to Spain. The boy’s name is Wilmer and he is having the adventure of a lifetime. He is experiencing a new country and he is also receiving some help that we cannot provide him at our home in Guatemala. Wilmer has gone abroad to improve himself by attending the Step by Step Foundation in Spain.
Here is some background information on Wilmer so that one may better understand why he is in Spain receiving the treatment that he is. When Wilmer was 9 years old his spinal cord was hit by a stray bullet and he was left a paraplegic. The clinical term for Wilmer is a paraplegic due to medullary lesions on the C5 vertebrae with secondary limb paresis. To put it more simply, Wilmer has lost all voluntary movement of his lower limbs and has limited movement of his upper extremities.
Wilmer getting ready for the cold weather in Spain
Wilmer came to us when he was 12 and he immediately began to receive daily therapy. At our home, he was receiving both physical and occupational therapy. The therapies were designed to help him so that he could become more independent and not as reliant on the constant help of others. During his therapy, we also made sure that all parts of his body received movement and exercise.
While Wilmer received all that we could provide him here it still wasn’t enough in terms of furthering his recovery process. Wilmer began to look and ask around for some different methods of therapy and he eventually found Step by Step Foundation.
It is the Step by Step Foundation that “presents a new working model in the field of spinal cord injury treatment.” It is there that they believe “in physiotherapy and physical activity as recovery tools and for health maintenance in general.” This is the best place for Wilmer to be right now and the fact that he gets to be in a different country and experience a new culture is an added plus.
Before leaving NPH Guatemala for Spain, Wilmer was “very excited, I couldn’t believe the trip became a reality. I want to do my best to get enough strength and movement to enjoy this experience outside of my country. Once done with my therapy I hope to be as independent as possible, to move in my country, and be able to complete my daily chores.”
While all of us here at Casa San Andres miss Wilmer tremendously, we are happy that he is getting all the help that he needs and deserves. Wilmer is an amazing person and we are fortunate to have him in our lives. We are very excited for this new chapter in his life and we can’t wait to see his progress and to see how much he will have developed in such a short period of time. We all wish him the best of luck on the journey that he is on and we look forward to his arrival back in Guatemala.