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Peruvian children get to smile again!

2 min read

Better Society
Source: Facebook PAZHolandesa

PAZ Holandesa treats Peruvian children born with a cleft lip or Spina Bifida.

Paz Holandesa

The Dutch non-profit organisation Paz Holandesa fixes cleft lips and Spina Bifida of Peruvian children.

Paz Holandesa returns smiles to Peruvian children The Dutch non-profit organises operations in Peru to fix cleft lips and Spina Bifida Source: Facebook Brightvibes

No health care for the poor…

In Peru, 1 in 250 children is born with a cleft lip or with Spina Bifida. Spina bifida, or "split spine" is a developmental congenital disorder caused by the incomplete closing of the embryonic neural tube.

The South-American country doesn’t provide health care to all of its population. There is a large gap between rich and poor, and the poor often can’t afford health care. Children that are born with one of the abovementioned conditions, don’t get treated for it and often suffer a great deal due to their condition.

When they’re born with a cleft lip, it is possible that children can’t talk or even eat or drink. This excludes them from going to school and can as a consequence exclude them from society. 

It is therefore of the utmost importance that as many children with cleft lips or Spina Bifida are treated. And that’s where PAZ Holandesa comes in!

A team of volunteer surgeons Source: Facebook Paz Holandesa

Travelling to Peru

Paz Holandesa was set up in 2000, when founder Marjan van Mourik travelled to Peru and saw how many children had untreated cleft lips. She herself was born with the condition, but got excellent health care in her homecountry, the Netherlands, so the cleft lip is almost unvisible and doesn’t pose any difficulties. 

She decided she wanted to do something about it and set up the non-porift Paz Holandesa.

Teams of Dutch surgeons travel to Peru about 5 times a year to perform about 200 surgeries each year. But they don’t only perform surgeries, they also provide speechlessons and care after the surgeries to ensure a full recovery.

Since the start of the non-profit, they have performed over 5000 free surgeries.

The hospital is located in the south of Peru, in Arequipa
The Tony Molleapaza Rojas children’s hospital The hospital is located in the south of Peru, in Arequipa Source: Website Paz Holandesa

Tony Molleapaza Rojas

In 2006, Paz Holandesa started to build a children’s hospital in Arequipa with the name Tony Molleapaza Rojas . In  2012, the hospital was finished and ready to be used. 

Here they can provide even better care and more intense revalidation treatments. Children and their parents can stay overnight until they’re fully healed. The hospital wants to be a ‘rolmodel’ hospital for other hospitals in Peru; where people can get free healthcare.

Thanks to the hospital they can perform surgery on even more children. Eventually, Paz hopes to close the gap between the care for rich and poor children.

The Ocean Sole creation, especially for Paz Holandesa
A flip flop lama The Ocean Sole creation, especially for Paz Holandesa Source: Facebook Paz Holandesa

Ocean Sole

Paz Holandesa collaborates with the Kenyan good cause Ocean Sole. This non-profit creates art animals out of flip flops found at the shore. This way they fight more than one problem: they clean up the shore by getting rid of flip flops and they provide work and a salary for local Kenyan workers.

Ocean Sole created Lama’s especially for Paz Holandesa, due to their Peruvian location. The profits of the Lama’s go to both Ocean Sole and Paz Holandesa.

Make an Impact

Donate to the cause

Donate money to provide more kids with a smile: the non-profit is entirely dependent on donations.