Aliou was just three years old when his blanket caught fire while he was sitting close to a fire, severely burning his upper body. His father thought his son wouldn’t survive, but his grandmother Bintou didn’t give up, determined he would live.
Amazingly, Aliou did survive, but as his burns healed, his arm contracted and became immobile. Surgery was the only way that his arm would move again, but there was no way the family could afford it.
The awful accident brought Aliou excruciating pain and disabled him. He could no longer write. For his grandmother, Bintou, seeing her grandson go to school was a priority, she wanted to him to have a bright future. She was determined that this wouldn’t be the end of his story and sought to find healing for him.
One day, Bintou heard on the radio that the Africa Mercy was coming to the port of Dakar to provide free surgeries and training for medical professionals. Together with Aliou, she embarked on the four-hour journey to bring her grandson to the hospital ship that would straighten his arm. This is where he found true healing.