An 11-year-old from Ethiopia’s Jewish community brightens the Children’s Home with her laughter.

Ruth is an 11-year-old girl from Gondar, Ethiopia, and a member of Ethiopia’s Jewish community. After suffering from fainting spells from exertion, her mother brought her to the University of Gondar Hospital.

There they identified swelling around the heart and referred to the cardiac center in Addis Ababa where she was diagnosed with myxoma, a benign (non-cancerous) growth in the heart. Myxomas can be as small as a few millimeters Q or grow to a few centimeters. Most myxomas develop in the area of the heart called the atrium, which is the top left chamber of the heart.   

“I was so scared… she had never been sick before,"
- her mother said. 

Three months later she was brought to Israel for urgent treatment. She underwent life-saving heart surgery in October, 2021, at Wolfson Medical Center in Holon.  Ruth’s mother is a leader in the Jewish community in Gondar, and was excited to get the chance to travel to Israel.

At the Children’s Home in Israel, Ruth was always helpful and made sure that both the children and volunteers were having fun. Always giggling and laughing, anyone who walked through the house could hear her laugh. Her mom was also a leader in the house, helping with all the children and cooking for other moms who couldn’t.

"I feel comforted just knowing Ruth has had the chance to come here for treatment. After seeing a child (Biniyam) return to our community healthy, I was filled with hope that Save a Child's Heart could help restore my child’s health too,” - her mother said.