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4 Children From South Sudan To Arrive in Israel for Life-Saving Heart Surgery

Four children from South Sudan will arrive in Israel for life-saving heart surgery. The effort to provide treatment by Israeli pediatric cardiologists for the children with congenital heart conditions is a collaboration between IsraAid and Save a Child’s Heart and comes after two years of planning. The children – Gai, 8; Habiba, 6; Phillip, 5; and Joel, 5, were diagnosed by pediatric cardiologist Dr. Akiva Tamir during a medical mission from Save a Child’s Heart to South Sudan in March 2019. The children receive day-to-day support from IsraAID’s Juba camp for Internally Displaced Persons. Their travel to Israel was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. The surgeries will take place at Wolfson Medical Center in Holon in central Israel and they will spend several months in Israel to recover, each accompanied by a guardian. Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs purchased the airline tickets for the children and their escorts, as part of an initiative to bring children from 25 African countries marking the 25th anniversary of Save a Child’s Heart. There are over 2 million internally displaced people in South Sudan and another 10.26 million South Sudanese refugees worldwide; the country was born in 2011, and was engulfed by civil war two years later.