Imagine the desperation that drives a mother to abandon her baby. Little Chi’s mother didn’t know what else to do. On April 25, 2019, she gave birth to her daughter. With the girl’s father not at her side, she was already under pressure from her own family. There was no support to be expected. And certainly not for a child who looked like Chi, disfigured by a large double-sided lip cleft. The additional cleft palate meant that she could not even breastfeed her daughter.
In her desperation, the young mother saw no other way but to give her baby into the care of Buddhist monks. It was also the monks who gave her her name and campaigned for the girl to receive treatment. The first operation took place on December 5, 2019: Our longstanding Vietnamese partner, the experienced surgeon Dr. Ai, closed Chi’s cleft lip. The palate surgery is planned for this year. And maybe Chi’s mother will return sometime to take in her daughter.