Life hasn't been easy for 2-year-old Samuel.

Born with spina bifada, he hasn't developed the ability to walk yet, but he sure likes getting around.

His mother brings him to ASELSI's physical therapy program where he gets care, exercise, and she gets training to help him develop the strength and hope to one day walk on his own.

For almost his whole life, Samuel’s mom has been bringing him to ASELSI’s physical therapy program called CAF. It’s located in the outskirts of Chichicastenango in the western highlands of Guatemala.

Today, Samuel was training with two local workers, Tashi and Andrea.

With fun toys, a tube, and soft pads on the floor, they encouraged Samuel to crawl through, over and under obstacles. Every once in a while, he’d lay his head down as if to say he was getting tired, but their encouragement and the sight of a toy got him back into action.

He picked up large wooden beads and stretched up to hand them to Tashi as she strung them on a shoelace.

What seemed like play was actually exercise to help strengthen his core muscles and get him ready for the next stage in what they hope will give him the ability to one day walk on his own.

As Shes Rivera, the CAF program director, talked with Samuel’s mother, she pointed out tips about how to have him sit up and things that would help as he develops.

For Shes. there is a big dream for Samuel: “That he can be more independent and active in the community, school and church,” she said.

That’s not a dream too big to dream either.

Shes said that they have worked with a now-17-year-old girl who has a similar condition. She is now in school and very independent even though she has to use a wheelchair because her parents can’t afford the leg braces she needs.

Samuel, like the 84 other children are receiving care that most of these families couldn’t afford if it weren’t for the donations of supporters who help make this a place where dreams can come true and mindsets can be changed.

Shes says that independent mobility for Samuel is also about teaching something to others about disabilities and the God who helps those with them keep overcoming..

Shes said they want to “show the community and church that someone who has a disability doesn’t mean they can’t be part of the community and ultimately know Christ and share Him with others.”

Those are big dreams but reachable ones with the help of donors, caring trainers, and faithful family members who help make ASELSI’s CAF a place of miracles.


If you want to help ASELSI continue caring for children with disabilities, consider donating here today!