20020131 St. Joseph School

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Tuesday December 31, 2002

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Children Helping Children

Photos By Joe Gigli

MENDHAM The students in St. Joseph's School here recently received a visit from 4-year-old Jorge Grajales from Panama whom they helped through Healing the Children (HTC), a national, non-profit, non-denominational organization dedicated to providing free medical care to needy children from the United States and abroad. (above) Jorge Grajales, plays with a slinky. (left) Host parent Faye Dyksen, of North Haledon, watches Joge play with the students of St. Joseph School.

Photos By Joe Gigli

Children
Helping
Children

MENDHAM The students in St. Joseph's School here recently received a visit from  4-year-old Jorge Grajales from Panama whom they helped through Healing the Children (HTC), a national, non-profit, non-denominational organization dedicated to providing free medical care to needy children from the United States and abroad.

 Jorge had his hands and feet amputated when he was 14 months old, due to a life threatening infection. Through the help of the St. Joseph's children, who held several school fundraisers, Jorge now has his special prostheses and paid a visit to his mentors to show off his new legs. He was even able to kick a soccer ball, which had the children squealing with delight.

Maureen Casey, St. Joseph's parishioner and HTC volunteer, explained that the school's principal was eager to find a way to get the children to connect with other children. This special visit was the realization of that connection.

The Midlantic chapter of HTC was founded in 1981. Headquartered in Butler, it draws support from New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and parts of Pennsylvania. This chapter is a major contributor to the overall HTC effort, seeing to the needs of more than 18,000 children since its founding. Mrs. Casey reassured that 95 cents of every dollar donated goes directly to the HTC efforts.

HTC delivers its services to children through many vehicles, chief among them being the International Program, where volunteer medical teams travel to developing nations to provide free medical care on location. The type of care offered includes dental, pediatric plastic and reconstructive surgery, ophthalmology, urology, otolaryngology (ear, nose, throat), and orthopedics.

(top left) Jorge Grajales plays peek-a-boo with the photographer. (top right) Jorge joins the students during the program. (above left) Jorge meets school principal Dolly Cinquino. (upper right) The highlight of Jorge's morning was playing soccer, with the students. (above right) Jorge reaches out for host mom Faye Dyksen. (left) Jorge sharing a laugh with host mom Faye Dyksen; Maureen Peterson; and Joan Thomas.

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