As the director of international services at ReSurge International, Amy
Laden is often contacted by individuals and other nonprofits seeking help for
impoverished children who need surgery. She works to connect patients in
need with our surgeons in developing countries.
About a year ago, a man from a small humanitarian organization contacted
her regarding a boy in Sierra Leone.
Eleven-year-old Sorie spilled kerosene on his shirt one day. Later, he was
carrying a lit lantern when the wind started to blow. To protect the flame
from the wind, Sorie placed the lamp beneath his kerosene-soaked shirt.
Tragically, the flame mixed with the residual kerosene and ignited his shirt,
causing terrible burns from his waist to his chin, and on his arms and legs.
Sadly, Sorie was just one of more than 6 million people in poor countries who
are severely burned each year (more school-aged children die of fires each
year than of tuberculosis or malaria).
Sorie became more than a faceless statistic when a group of humanitarian
organizations worked together to get him the help he needed. ReSurge
doesn't work in Sierra Leone but our medical partner in Ghana offered to
perform the reconstructive surgeries (four so far) that released his severely
contracted arm and neck.
Today, Sorie can use his arm and move his neck. "It's exciting to realize
that Sorie now has a chance at a much brighter future. Just a few surgeries
dramatically improved his life and the life of his family," said Laden, who
made the connection between the humanitarian organization and our
Ghana center. "I'm really glad we at ReSurge had a chance to be part of his