What do Mia Hamm, Troy Aikman, and Kristi Yamaguchi have in common? All three are successful professional athletes, born with clubfoot. That’s a congenital condition that prevents sufferers from walking normally, or at all, because one or both feet are twisted inward, out of position.
In the developed world, clubfoot is usually cured soon after birth. Unfortunately, in developing countries the condition regularly goes untreated, even though an effective, relatively low cost non-surgical therapy is available. Children with clubfoot are routinely shunned and isolated. They are less likely to be in school, and as adults, are often unable to find work.
In 2014 and 2015, Project Redwood funded MiracleFeet, a non-profit that has partnered with more than 150 clinics in 20 developing countries to bring cures for clubfoot to 23,000 children of impoverished families. MiracleFeet continues to expand its treatment capacity to new countries and within existing domains.
The Public Broadcasting Service featured MiracleFeet on the July 3, 2017 PBS News Hour. MiracleFeet’s Executive Director Chesca Colloredo-Mansfeld talked about the genesis of the non-surgical Ponseti method to treat clubfoot, and about MiracleFeet’s mission to proliferate the cure in poor nations. Click on the image below to watch the six and a half minute PBS video.
In a July 6 New York Times Op-Ed, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Nicholas Kristoff recounts his experiences in Liberia, watching MiracleFeet at work. “I wanted us to report on clubfoot because it’s an anti-dote to skepticism about humanitarian aid,” he says. Read the full article by clicking on the image below.