Last year, you got to know the LaCroix family as our 2021 family of the year. We hope you loved watching little Lourdens grow and cheering on his mama, Danillo. This year I am so excited to introduce our 2022 Family Of The Year, the Olympe Family.
We first got to know this family back in the fall of 2017 when 1-month-old Wilson was admitted to Middle Ground in our NICU program. He weighed 7lbs and had been brought by his mama Gladys, who was struggling to breastfeed him. One week after their admission, Gladys’ 3-year-old, Gladna was brought by a family member to visit her mama. When our staff saw her, they recognized the signs of severe malnutrition right away, and that day Gladna was also admitted into our inpatient program.
Both Wilson and Gladna thrived in inpatient care, and five weeks later, they graduated and returned home. For the next 12 months, Gladys brought her children faithfully to each follow-up appointment. At one-year post-graduation, they were both happy and healthy! Unfortunately, after that appointment lost contact with us, and we didn’t hear from them again. That is, until July 25th of this year, when Gladys once again appeared outside of our gates. This time she carried her 2-year-old daughter, Lovena, in her arms. Lovena was swollen from kwashiorkor and severely anemic. She was so weak she could barely hold up her heavy head. We immediately welcomed Gladys inside and admitted her little girl for care.
Once Gladys and Lovena got settled, Gladys shared with our team that her 19-year-old daughter also had a baby who was sick. At the urging of our staff, five days later, Nadia arrived with her son, 20-month-old Gladimir. Little Gladimir was also swollen and suffering from kwashiorkor malnutrition.
Both Lovena and Gladimir weighed just over 18lbs when admitted for care. They each spent ten days on F75 therapeutic milk before transferring to our Medika Mamba program. For the next four weeks, both babies recovered beautifully, and while we watched their physical transformations, we saw an undeniable change in their mothers too. When they arrived, Nadia was a young mama who was so timid she barely spoke above a whisper. She never made eye contact with anyone and was hesitant to answer questions or participate in our education classes. It took several weeks, but by Mid-August, Nadia was almost unrecognizable. She glowed with love for her son and confidence in her ability to take care of him.
On the 25th of August, just under one month after being admitted for inpatient care, we felt confident that Lovena and Gladimir were ready to be transferred to our outpatient program and continue their treatment at home. The next few weeks proved that to be the right decision, and this little family blew us all away with the way they absorbed the things they learned during their time at Middle Ground. Eight weeks later, Lovena had gained almost 6lbs, and Gladimir had gained over 4lbs. They were fully recovered from their malnutrition and graduated from our programs.
In the months since their graduation, we have continued to enjoy visits from this family every few weeks, and we have continued to watch Nadia and Gladys be incredible caregivers to their children. We are so excited to name the Olympe family as our Family Of The Year for 2022 and look forward to sharing the next 12 months of their journey with you. We hope you’ll keep watching our social media for these now familiar faces and join us as we cheer for them and all they will do in 2022.
Because someone like you gave a gift to Middle Ground the Olympe Family had a chance to find full healing at Middle Ground. Today these mamas have been empowered to care for their children and provide a future filled with hope for them. Each of them is desperately loved, divinely created, and destined for a purpose. When you give to Middle Ground you give the world a chance to have these incredible humans make their impact.
Your gifts are changing and saving lives, one dollar at a time!