Faizel Patel, Radio Islam News – 2013-05-07
A 3 year old Palestinian toddler Mohammed al-Farra has won the hearts of his Israeli doctors, who raise funds for his medical bills at Edmond and Lily Safra Children's Hospital which is part of the Tel Hashomer complex in the Israeli city of Ramat Gan.
Bubbly and cute little Mohammed was born in Gaza with a rare genetic disease. His hands and feet were amputated because of complications from his condition, and the vibrant little toddler carts about in a tiny red wheelchair.
In a heart wrenching twist of fate, Mohammed’s parents abandoned him, and the Palestinian government won't pay for his care, so he lives at the hospital with his 55 year old grandfather, Hamouda al-Farra. He says, “There's no care for this child in Gaza, there's no home in Gaza where he can live”
"He can't open anything by himself; he can't eat or take down his pants. His life is zero without help," added Farra.
Mohammed was rushed to Israel as a newborn for emergency treatment. His genetic disorder left him with a weakened immune system and crippled his bowels and an infection destroyed his hands and feet, requiring them to be amputated.
In the midst of his treatment, his mother abandoned little Mohammed because her husband, ashamed of their son, threatened to take a second wife if she didn't leave the baby and return to their home in the southern Gaza Strip town of Khan Younis, al-Farra said.
Mohammed spends his days undergoing treatment and learning how to use prosthetic limbs while his grandfather cares for him. The little boys Israeli doctors, who've grown attached to the boy, fundraise to cover his medical bills, allowing him and his grandfather to live in the sunny yellow-painted children’s pediatric ward.
It’s not clear how long Mohammed will stay in the hospital, or where he'll go when his treatment is complete. As a Palestinian, he is not eligible for permanent Israeli residency. Yet his family will not take the child back.
“He needs many things in his life," al-Farra said, absentmindedly massaging Mohammed's arm stump as the toddler rested on his lap. "He needs a home." – AP