Hugo was 13 when he was introduced to the RVF in 2005. His diagnosis was trichiasis, a condition in which the eyelashes grow inward. Although his vision was normal, for many years his eyes suffered from chronic and severe irritation and infections.
At the time of his evaluation, he was no longer able to study and could only crack his eyes open just enough to slowly guide himself. On top of this, his family lived in abject poverty. Put simply, Hugo’s condition was one of the most disturbing and compelling cases that the RVF has had the opportunity to intervene in. A simple surgery and just $157 later, Hugo could once again see clearly and participate fully in life.
The RVF ensured that Hugo re-entered school, and he quickly became one of the best students in his class. Although his life seemed to be improving, Hugo returned home one day to find his mother had disappeared. He had been abandoned. Homeless, he came to our Bolivian partner CSRA for help. With funds from the RVF, Hugo was ensured a safe place to live and continuation of his studies.
After graduating from high school, Hugo applied to the RVF for a scholarship to study mechanics in a technical school. With great pleasure, he was awarded his scholarship.
Hugo’s case represents the power of the RVF’s central methodology: we are focused on quality and we follow through over time. Although alleviation of suffering is certainly a valuable goal in of itself, ensuring Hugo has a productive future has without doubt added unquantifiable value to our donors’ investment.
I don’t have parents anymore. But I do have the Rosa Vera Fund. Some of my friends laugh at me, but I know that someday I’m going to use my skills of fixing motorcycles and cars to help others in need.