A Fantastic Update on Claudine

For you who may not be familiar with Claudine’s story here is a refresher.

Late one night my friend Dr Pietre, a volunteer Ophthalmologist from Belgium here in Muhanga for two years and working at Kabgayi Hospital, called to ask for help. He had a little girl patient 2 1/2 years of age who was blind and needed cataract surgery, but because of her health she could not survive the anesthesia. “Arlene would you be willing to take her for a few months and see if you can get her in better health for me.”

I liked Dr Pietre very much and wanted to help him so I said “of course she can come here and we will do our best."

This child was not a 2 1/2 year old. She was an infant. She was wrapped in dirty material and tied to an old woman’s back. When I took her in my arms, her body and clothes did not weigh 5 lbs. This is a 2 1/2 year old child?

With good food, much love and prayers, in 6 months Claudine’s health has improved and a specialist Anesthetist was flown in from Belgium to be sure Claudine had a chance. Before allowing the surgery to take place, John and I decided to have her examined by a doctor in Kigali. We knew she had a heart problem but did not know what caused it.

Here is the best part. All tests affirmed she could survive the eye surgery. She has a hole in her heart that is causing trouble. The doctor who did the Ultra sound informed me that there is a team of Heart specialist coming to the hospital in Kigali and he would put Claudine on the list of candidates for them to consider. He seemed to think we have a very good chance of being selected for heart repair. They will come in November. He said he will be in touch with us by the end of September. There will be a cost of $1000 USD plus about $200 for time in the hospital and I know God will provide what is needed. We are asking for prayers that this door that has been opened will remain open and good things will happen for Claudine.
God is awesome.

Claudine after surgery.

Surgery over our little girl is swathed in bandages. Cataracts were removed from both eyes.

Claudine is a good patient.

The bandages came off the second day. She did not open her eyes for another day. The pictures below are on the third day after surgery and you will see she is opening her eyes a little. The doctor is not sure how much vision she will have but we know she will have more than she had and they will work with her in with contact lenses and she will probably wear glasses. We can deal with that. I will be very happy when she has vision and can see the children who love her so much. Urukundo kids have been praying for her to see and it will happen.


I think she is doing real well.


The team who operated on our little Claudine. Doctor Sarah & Doctor Pete. We are so grateful for their being here.

Doctor Sarah & Doctor Pete