Tania Vanessa, 15 years old

Tania was diagnosed with a large hole in her heart when she was 2 years old. She waited 13 years to have a surgery. When diagnosed, Tania was referred to a cardiologist at the only public childrenÂ’s hospital in El Salvador, the Benjamin Bloom ChildrenÂ’s Hospital in San Salvador. Her family lived in San Pedro Perulapan, several hours away from San Salvador, so she and her family had to endure the long trips and the financial expense of those trips. Tania grew up wishing to learn how to rollerblade, to run with her friends and to walk at the same pace as her school classmates. She could not do any of these activities because she would become very tired and fainted easily. On May 14, 2007, Tania finally had her heart completely repaired. She recovered well and was able to go home a few days after her surgery. Tania is now an accomplished rollerbladder.