Child of the month – June 2010

of the month

By Rich Petersen

Abraham de Jesús Gamboa Quiñónez


child-june10Niños Incapacitados “takes the summer off” from June through August as far as its monthly meetings, since many of our members and volunteers are gone during these months. But, we do not stop supporting our families whose children suffer from serious illnesses.

This month we revisit one of our needy children and bring you up to date on his progress. This is Abraham de Jesús Gamboa Quiñónez. Quite a name for a 9-year-old little guy, no? Abraham is seen here with his mother María Magdalena, a housewife who lives in Chapala with her husband Carlos and five other children.

At birth Abraham’s umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck so that he suffered from asphyxia during several crucial moments and therefore he now suffers from a slight degree of mental slowness. Nonetheless, he attends the “Blue School” in Chapala and is doing well. This is a school for children with special needs.

While an infant Abraham was prone to convulsions, again due to the lack of sufficient oxygen immediately following birth. Fortunately the convulsions no longer occur, but during the treatment the doctors found that one of his kidneys was malformed and was not functioning as it should. There is a small blockage which inhibits the free flow of urine from the kidney to the ureter that has resulted in his left kidney only having 34% of its normal function. His right kidney function is 66%.

A human being can get along just fine with only one kidney, so at present Abraham is being monitored closely for any sign of kidney or urinary tract infection. He is on no medications at present because he is free of infection. Niños Incapacitados has paid for his latest kidney function test (a gamma gram) as well as bus trips to and from the Hospital Civil.

The group has also paid for glasses for Abraham since another consequence of his oxygen deprivation is short-sightedness. His teachers noted immediately that he was having trouble seeing the blackboard in class and also was having trouble reading. With his new glasses Abraham is doing very well in school.

Since we last told you about Abraham, he has had his kidney drain removed and is doing well. He was worried about having to undergo another “procedure,” and his mother had to work closely with the psychologists at the Hospital Civil to reassure her son that all would be well and that he wouldn’t die. You can imagine the tears when he himself told us that he was afraid he wouldn’t see his mother again.

But, you can see from the photograph the bright eyes and winning smile of this young man. He loves to play tag and hide-and-seek and he would love to have a bicycle of his own to ride around town. At the end of his visit to our meeting last year, Abraham wouldn’t leave until he had shaken the hand of every one of the group, always with a smile (and a peck on the cheek for the women).

Please mark Thursday September 9 on your calendars for the resumption of Niños Incapacitados’ monthly meetings—10:00 in one of the lower meeting rooms at the Hotel Real de Chapala where you will have a chance to meet another one of the children we assist with medical expenses, and learn about how you can help with fundraising or other volunteer work. For more information, please visit our website: or email us at

For more information about Lake Chapala visit:

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