Photo Credit: Lwanele, our little warrior - Facebook

Lwanele the little warrior went viral in 2018 after he received life-saving surgery, he was photographed smiling after the operation and he never stopped!


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Johannesburg, South Africa (04 September 2020) – A smile can light up a room, especially a hospital room! Lwanele has a smile that could light up South Africa if he tried! In fact, he already has. In 2018, Lwanele went into surgery to help correct one of his birth defects and when he woke, he had an infectious smile!

The photo of him smiling warmed so many hearts and it went viral. This was good news as it shared his important story.

Celebrating Lwanele: Baby goes viral with the happiest smile after a life-saving operation!
Photo Credit: Lwanele. our little warrior – Facebook

He was born at 32 weeks via a C-section, weighing 1.6kg; he stayed in the Neonatal ICU for 51 days. He had two operations during his NICU stay; one when he was 24 hours old, to fix the oesophagal fistula and to connect his stomach to the oesophagus. At six days old, he had another operation to do a colostomy. At some stage, he had seizures and was started on anti-seizure medication, which he still takes every night.

Lwanele then had another operation when he was five months old, to create an anal opening for him (PSARP).

In January 2018 when he was seven months old he had severe difficulty in feeding and breathing. He started coughing and vomiting each time his parents tried feeding him. They then had to take him to the hospital where he spent 14 days. He was diagnosed with bronchopneumonia.

Lwanele is a little warrior who was born with multiple birth defects but continues to survive and thrive! Having spent his first two birthdays in hospital, Lwanele was able to spend his third birthday at home this year. He is stronger and growing fast but he continues to need constant medical care, chronic medication and a selection of physiotherapy sessions to address various issues.

Thankfully, the family are on medical aid so the bulk of expenses are covered but as always, there are also several things medical aid won’t cover. The family have been working hard to cover medical expenses by hosting fundraisers and events but the pandemic and lockdown have put that all on hold.

They are once again turning to crowdfunding to bridge the gap and stay financially afloat while raising a brave little warrior!

The Marian Rose Foundation supports Lwanele by providing him with speech therapy. What the family need to cover now are his occupational therapy and neuro-physiotherapy sessions. These are the things they are crowdfunding for. Each week, they need to pay large sums to cover his sessions, all of which take place at their home due to Lwanele being prone to infections. The sessions greatly improve Lwanele’s overall wellbeing and the family have seen him thrive.

“Lwanele has got developmental delays in all aspects (speech, motor development and has severe sensory processing disorders) which we wish to address now while he’s still young, with the hope that he may be able to reach his maximum capacity one day.” – Chelesani Moyo, Lwanele’s mother

As any mother would, Chelesani wants to see her son thrive but she needs a helping hand. As they always say, it takes a village! So if you wish to be a part of Chelesani and Lwanele’s village, you can donate to their cause here. Chelesani has taken the time to detail every aspect of Lwanele’s condition to help educate people about his medical care routine. You will be able to read that on his crowdfund page as well. You can also follow his Facebook page for regular updates and the most adorable pictures of him smiling!!!


Sources: Chelesani Moyo
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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