Eimy Gonzalez came into the world with several strikes against her. She was born with the very complex set of congenital heart defects known as Fallot’s tetrology, with moderate infundibular stenosis and significant pulmonary valve stenosis, as well as a hypoplastic pulmonary artery ring and other complications. Eimy’s parents, Pedro and Karina, are recovering alcoholics who met as adolescents when they both lived on the streets. They also both have AIDS. They are in medical treatment and have been involved in an addiction rehabilitation program for several years now, but their precarious history has been difficult to overcome. The death a few months ago of Eimy’s older sister, Naomi, who had contracted AIDS from her mother, served as a profound shock to Pedro and Karina. They are determined to do better for Eimy.
When the case was referred to the local social workers and medical partners of Solidarity Bridge in Cochabamba, Eimy was one year old and had already been evaluated by multiple specialists, who determined she was a proper candidate for corrective surgery.
In the interview with the social worker, Karina spoke for the family:
Now we are repentant for the life we used to live. In the group we attend, we have come to know God, and that gives us strength to move forward. … Now we know that if we had sought help sooner, my daughter [Naomi] might still be alive. We don’t want the same to happen to Eimy. Please, we ask you to help us save her life.
Eimy’s surgery took place in the Belga Clinic on September 21st, 2012, and her condition is currently good. This surgery was made possible through the financial support of Dharma Trading Company. Pedro has maintained a steady income driving a taxi, and the couple is striving to improve their living conditions to give Eimy and two older siblings a proper start at life.