International Children

How HTC Is Making a Difference


HTC Arizona sponsors children from abroad who require extensive medical and surgical treatment for admission to the US. Once a child’s need is identified and free medical care is arranged, children are flown to Arizona, where they live with volunteer host families who care for them through their medical treatment. Once the children recover, and are healthy and strong, they return to their families in their home country.



We have already helped children from all these countries as HTC continues helping children around the corner… and around the world.

Kennsy Makes Return Visit to HTC to Straighten Severely Bowed Legs

With her cherub face and sweet, studious disposition, Kennsy charmed everyone who met her.  Kennsy returned to the United States in 2006 as a follow-up to the 2005 surgery to straighten her severely bowed legs.  With the determined energy her host family had come to expect from her, Kennsy went right back to her American school, friends, watching seemingly endless episodes of “That’s So Raven” with her host sisters, and her visits to Dr. Shindell’s office, where she was a favorite.   After getting plates and screws implanted in her knees to continue the straightening process at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, Kennsy returned to her eager family in Honduras.  She is expected to return to the U.S. for a third time at some point in the future for the removal of the implants.  Until then, Kennsy is a fond and inspiring memory for those she left behind.

Story submitted by Kennsy’s host mom Jill.

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Marlon from Honduras lived with his mother and two sisters in poverty stricken Tegucigalpa. Marlon suffered from a severe case of kyphoscoliosis, a condition causing not only a lateral curve of the spine, but also a “hunchback”. His mother had been unable to afford medical care for him since first discovering his condition as a young boy. Finally, at age 16, a doctor referred him to HTC’s International Partner in Tegucigalpa and he was on his way to Phoenix for surgery. Unfortunately, due to his age and normal hardening of the bones, physicians were unable to completely straighten his curvature, but performed a spinal fusion with a titanium rod placement to stop the progression of his disease. Marlon already had one lung being affected and a curvature in his esophagus was making it sometimes difficult to swallow. He was operated on by Dr. Richard Shindell at St. Joseph’s Hospital. Marlon returned to Honduras in August 2005 but has since been invited to come back by his former host family to live with them and to attend college in Arizona.

Slide show:

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Little Luis, a 2 year-old from Peru, and his mother came to stay with relatives in Mesa. Shortly after Luis was born he was diagnosed with a profound bilateral hearing loss, but the Peruvian government wasn’t able to provide the toddler with a cochear implant device, so his aunt in Mesa went on a mission. She enlisted the help of Dr. Michael Fucci who recruited services for Luis at Banner Desert Medical Center. What they didn’t have was the cochlear implant itself and that’s where HTC Arizona came in.Healing the Children worked with Cochlear of America’s who were willing to provide the device for half of it’s cost. For the other half Luis’s aunt received a donation from an Australian inventor and she collected monies raised by the family itself. So in August of 2008 Luis received his coclear implant and just a few weeks later he was able to hear the voice of his mom clearly for the first time in his life. In September Luis and his mom returned back to lima where the child will receive follow-up therapy and services.



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Juan from Ecuador had broken his arm as a little boy when he fell out of a pick up truck. Poor medical care and improper healing left him with a painful right arm with limited mobility. Juan’s family sought out medical care in the U.S. and found HTC. He flew to Arizona in February of 2006 and was operated on at Scottsdale Healthcare Shea by Dr. Scott Croft. Juan returned home just 6 weeks later after intense physical therapy provided by Peterson Physical Therapy in Scottsdale.

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On Jan. 13, 2009 9 Year-old Samir from Ecuador came to Arizona. Just two days later he was already admitted at St. Joseph’s Hospital to undergo a double procedure. The first one was corrective eye surgery by Dr. Brendan Cassidy followedby Dr. Harold Rekate’s procedure to remove a tumor from the brain. Samir did very well, all things considered Several days later he was released to recover in the comfort of his host family. To everyone’s surprise just two weeks after his release from the hospital Samir was told he could go back to his own family in Ecuador. Although the host family was glad for Samir, they would have loved to have him stay somewhat longer with them. Samir however knew his own mom missed him very much and left Arizona with a big smile on his face.


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