No More Fear in Madagascar

Written by MiracleFeet intern Dylan Bedell

Elodie was born to an unsuspecting family in Mangarano, Madagascar, who were shocked at the sight of her “twisted feet.” As the youngest of three children with no other signs of clubfoot in their family tree, Elodie’s condition was a first for her village. Soon after her birth, Elodie’s father refused to even look at her and soon began talking about abandoning the family.

Elodie’s mother, scared of both her husband’s words as well as her daughter’s condition, brought Elodie to the Ponseti Clubfoot Clinic SAR (Service d’Appareillage et de Rééducation) located at Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Toamasina (CHUT) – a MiracleFeet-supported clinic. Elodie made her first appearance at the clinic at only one month old – before her umbilical cord was fully healed. Instantly, Elodie underwent treatment for her bilateral clubfoot and was rapidly on the road to recovery.

Back home in her village, only 30 miles from the clinic, Elodie was faced with whispers and taunts from villagers who called her a “monster.” She had been shunned by her community as unnatural and scary. Elodie’s mother described her daughter’s clubfoot as “a bad dream,” but after treatment, this bad dream was easy to forget.

Elodie’s feet were completely corrected as was her father’s faith. With a condition corrected so close to infancy, Elodie will thankfully never remember the taunts and darkness clouding her birth nor will she have to face any part of her life obstructed by a limiting condition.

“My baby has new feet and her father has a new view of her,” Elodie’s mother said.