Griselda and her fourteen-year old son, Diego, live in a two-bedroom home in a rural area of Tijuana without electricity, running water, a refrigerator or even a septic system. Their situation is so grave, they use a car battery to power a lamp in their home. Their dire situation gets even more difficult. Diego has struggled with his health since birth. Doctors have diagnosed him with Asperger’s syndrome, a condition on the autism spectrum, chronic asthma, nasal septum obstruction, adenoid complications and tonsilitis.
All of Diego’s treatments and specialty doctor visits have been supported by the P.A.P.I Program, a financial assistance program at Hospital Infantil de las Californias (HIC), supported by the Foundation for the Children of the Californias. Through this program, Griselda is able to maintain some peace of mind knowing that although she may not be able to provide the most desirable living conditions for her son, she can provide him with the best specialized medical care available. HIC has provided Diego with mental health therapy, neurology, respiratory treatments, language and learning therapy. Because of the concentrated efforts, Diego has been increasingly able to control his emotions, interact with his peers, have decreased spells of depression and is better apt to handle academic situations.
This life-challenging experience has inspired Griselda to go back to school and pursue a career in learning therapy. Diego, who is currently learning English, aspires to be a doctor. His biggest inspiration is Helen Keller, a woman who overcame her own physical challenges. Can you help Diego and Griselda continue on their journey to make a better life for themselves?