……a few words with World of Children Award Honouree Kenro Izu
Where do you see Friends Without A Border going in the next 10 years?
Friends’ main focus over the next 10 years will be on Lao Friends Hospital for Children and developing programs of Treatment + Education + Prevention, and to create a center for teaching pediatrics in Lao PDR. Our goal is to build LFHC as the major education center of pediatric health care and create a positive impact on health care for the whole country.
With LFHC, the goal is that all children who seek help will receive high-quality and compassionate care…it’s as I always tell our staff, “Treat every patient as if they were your own child.”
How will World of Children Award help you to expand your program?
It will help us spread awareness and put a spotlight on an area that has been much neglected. Very little attention has been paid to Southeast Asia, Laos and Cambodia especially. This is simply due to the fact that many people are in the dark about the struggles those communities face, and how desperate the health situation is. Having the backing of such a respected organization as World of Children Award will help us reach a wider audience and will bring more weight to the situation.
Kenro Izu first encountered Cambodia’s appalling lack of pediatric healthcare when he met children suffering from a variety of disabilities and illnesses during a photography trip in 1993.
Tragically, he witnessed a young girl die in front of his eyes in the regional hospital. Her life was cut short because her parents could not pay the $2 needed to treat her. The hospital and the doctors of the hospital left the girl alone without providing any treatment.