Clubfoot awareness in a community can often be the deciding factor between a treatment referral or a childhood of painful, neglected clubfoot. Makara, born in Cambodia with bilateral clubfoot, was fortunate to be delivered by a midwife who was well-acquainted with clubfoot, and it made all the difference for his family.When Prab and her husband Thlouk, who both work as farmers, learned they were having their third child, they were overjoyed. Their joy quickly turned to sadness and fear when their son Makara was born with both feet turned inward. Fortunately, their midwife recognized the condition and knew treatment was available for free at nearby Battambang Hospital.When Makara was thirteen days old, Prab and Thlouk took him to the clubfoot clinic where he was enrolled in treatment. Despite reassurances from both their midwife and the doctor in the clinic, Makara’s family was still worried the treatment wouldn’t work. They felt discouraged and weren’t sure the condition would be treatable, as it looked so serious to them. They questioned why this was happening to them.After the first few casts, however, their despair lessened as they noticed the transformation in Makara’s feet. Now one year old, Makara is standing and just beginning to walk with perfectly straight feet. He wears his brace during naps and at night, and Prab and Thlouk faithfully bring the boy to each clinic appointment. Makara likes to play with his toy cars and ball, and will likely have no memory of being born with clubfoot.
Thanks to our partners at NextSteps Cambodia, children like Makara are able to receive this transformative treatment, preventing a leading cause of disability.
Read more stories from Cambodia here.