Changing Ariana's World 

Beautiful Ariana Zongo was only 5 months old when she came to us, all the way from the African nation of Burkina Faso, and won the hearts of everyone she met.

Ariana’s cleft lip and palate obscured her pretty face and also made it difficult for her to chew and swallow her food.  At St. Ann Mercy hospital, a brand-new facility in Toledo, Dr. John Robinson, a plastic surgeon, operated on Ariana to repair her defect, with excellent results.

Bill Rudolph of Toledo heard HTC executive director Helen Salan speak at a Rotary Club meeting, and he picked up one of our brochures and took it home.  His wife, Laura, was inspired to call Helen and ask how she could help and that’s how Bill and Laura and their children became Ariana’s host family.  “Ariana was a very sweet baby who always gave away her pretty smiles,” Laura says.  “She brought so much joy to our family.”

It’s apparent that Ariana’s magic is potent: Laura agreed to become our Toledo coordinator and hopes to make it possible for many more children to benefit from the generosity and excellence of Toledo’s medical community.

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