Tebow Spine Center: Providing Transformative Healing for Children with Spinal Deformities

December 15 3 Minute Read????

Tebow Spine Center: Providing Transformative Healing for Children with Spinal Deformities

Hello December 15th, 2023

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In the face of adversity, we often feel less isolated when we are surrounded by a compassionate, loving community that chooses not to look away from the challenges we are facing, but instead, rallies with us to fill us with hope and encouragement in our deepest time of need. But what if that community doesn't exist? What if, instead of support, we're met with doubt and discouragement when we so desperately need hope? This is the painful reality for many children with spinal deformities in Ethiopia. Children like Kedir.

Kedir's family first noticed an abnormal curvature in his spine four years ago, around age eleven. At the time, they thought little of it since Kedir never complained of pain or inability to play. As Kedir aged, his mother noticed his condition worsening. His spine was beginning to visibly twist, and he began experiencing back pain on his right side whenever he ran, walked, or played with friends. Adding to his constant physical pain, his schoolmates began to notice the curve in his spine and cruelly mocked him every chance they got.

As if the ridicule from his community and the worsening pain wasn’t enough, there was a deeper concern that troubled his family—the lack of a treatment available to Kedir that could potentially take his life. Without proper care for children with spinal deformities, their conditions worsen over time. This can lead to improper lung development, persistent respiratory complications, and ultimately, a shortened life expectancy.

10.pngAccording to TTF’s ministry partner, CURE International, it is estimated that 50,000 children in Ethiopia need urgent treatment due to their severe spinal conditions. 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.

The profound impact of childhood spinal conditions goes beyond just physical health. These children frequently confront the harsh realities of social rejection, stigmatization, and, in some extreme cases, neglect and abuse.

At the Tim Tebow Foundation, we acknowledge the gravity of the situation, the profound suffering it causes, and the urgent need for action. That is why we are working hand-in-hand with CURE’s Medical Director in Ethiopia, Dr. Timothy Nunn, Dr. Rick Hodes (JDC), and African Mission Healthcare to provide much-needed medical care to precious image-bearers of God. We believe that no child should have to constantly suffer physical pain or endure the emotional challenges that come with spinal deformity. Through our strategic partnership, we are able to support the first-ever pediatric spine center at CURE Children’s Hospital of Ethiopia.

12.pngToday, the Tebow Spine Center provides jacket-casting treatments for young children and orthotic support braces specifically tailored for the child. These treatments help reduce or correct scoliosis curvatures, offering children a chance at an improved quality of life from a very early age.

In 2024, we hope to start rod implant treatment for children ages 5-10. This innovative treatment can greatly enhance the prognosis of children suffering from spinal deformities, providing hope for them and their families.

As we look toward next year, we are eagerly anticipating the official opening of Tebow Spine Center. The treatments provided through Tebow Spine Center at CURE Children’s Hospital of Ethiopia will provide the surgical and non-surgical care children need to correct their life-limiting spinal deformities, bringing immediate, tangible, and measurable change into their lives. We believe these steps truly help us take a significant stride toward addressing the urgent need for specialized pediatric care in Ethiopia.

11.pngAs we grow in our mission to bring Faith, Hope and Love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need, we feel incredibly honored that we get to play a part in healing children like Kedir. Our desire is that many more children would find a loving community and that together, we can bring hope where there is despair and fight tirelessly for a future where every child has access to the care they need and deserve.

TTF Family, we cannot do this alone. Your support can help transform the lives of children like Kedir, bringing them hope and healing. These children need family, communities, and those who are stirred to help financially who choose to look beyond their condition and see their inherent worth and dignity as image-bearers of God, loved by Him. Will you help us bring the hope that medical treatment can offer?


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