Betselot’s Story: Her Deformity Does Not Define Her Identity

April 17 3 Minute Read????

Betselot’s Story: Her Deformity Does Not Define Her Identity

Hello April 17th, 2024

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Betselot is a smiley 10-year-old girl from Ethiopia who was born with severe scoliosis; a serious condition indicated by a sideways curvature of the spine.  As a result of her condition, Betselot's life has always looked a little different from those around her, even from her twin sister’s.

For the last ten years, Betselot has navigated everyday struggles that her sister has never experienced and may never fully understand. Betselot faced battles of social rejection, medical complications, and physical difficulties daily due to her spinal condition.

"Betselot's schoolmates always asked why her back was like this. All these questions and the piercing stares made Betselot ashamed of her condition. This greatly affected her self-esteem," said Sinke, Betselot's mom.

Can you imagine the decade of heartbreak that Betselot endured to find acceptance and belonging?

On top of battling and coping with the social stigma that often surrounds life with a disability, Betselot also struggled to get a good night's sleep due to severe back pain.

Her mother could not bear it any longer as she witnessed Betselot fight through physical pain night after night. Unwilling to sit idly while her beloved daughter faced all these challenges, Sinke took Betselot to a nearby hospital. There, she met a doctor who examined Betselot’s back and referred her to CURE Children’s Hospital of Ethiopia.

There, Betselot received a personalized scoliosis treatment plan and was introduced to a loving community that reminded her of her value as God's cherished image-bearer.

At the Tebow Spine Center, Betselot received her spine jacket to prepare for her first Mehta casting procedure, a revolutionary and non-invasive treatment for early-onset scoliosis. At TTF, alongside our ministry partners at CURE International, we’re committed to help meet the urgent needs of children like Betselot across Ethiopia.

It’s estimated that around 50,000 children in Ethiopia need urgent medical treatment due to their severe spinal conditions. But currently, there is an overwhelming lack of specialized pediatric care available for children with such critical needs.

For every four million children in Ethiopia, there is just one fellowship-trained pediatric orthopedic surgeon.

We are actively working to combat these statistics and bring hope to many children awaiting life-enhancing care.

The Tebow Spine Center brought Betselot physical and spiritual support and hope for relief and healing.  She could not conceal her joy as she looked forward to a promising healing journey with the caring and loving staff at the hospital. On December 11, 2023, Betselot underwent her first casting procedure, bringing her hope for a better quality of life! Her spinal treatment plan involves a series of applications of customized casts, that will gradually correct the curvature of her spine. Though it will be a long healing journey for Betselot, her excitement radiates through her smile!

At the Tebow Spine Center, Betselot found brighter days in her darkest moments.

Betselot's spinal deformity does not define her identity as God's image-bearer. Her transformative healing journey is an inspiring reminder to look beyond external appearances and genuinely embrace every individual's worth and value. She is loved, valued, and wonderfully made in God's image.

Healing is not always an easy journey. But when it takes place within the support of a community, light can shine through even the darkest moments. These estimated 50,000 children in Ethiopia are at risk of premature death due to their severe spinal disorders. Your support can make a profound impact that will help transform the lives of children like Betselot. You can help provide hope, healing, and many more miraculous moments for children just like her!

Will you help us make more life-enhancing surgeries and treatments possible? Make a tax-deductible gift and give these precious children a chance at a longer, healthier life.

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