New heart, new hope, new life for Alia

Late last year, hundreds of people supported our Mend Alia's Broken heart crowdfunding campaign. We're thrilled to let you know that Alia, 15, had her surgery two days before Christmas, and has made an excellent recovery. Alia has just returned to Timor-Leste, to a whole new life.

For Alia and her family, this is the best festive season gift imaginable. All thanks to the big-hearted supporters who contributed so generously to our crowdfunding campaign, and the expertise and care of cardiac surgeon Professor Yves d'Udekem and all at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne.

The successful double valve repair, a complex four-hour open heart procedure, means that for the first time in years, Alia can breathe easily, walk and move freely, eat well and enjoy life.

Alia’s mum Octavia cannot believe her daughter’s transformation.

"My family and I would like to say a big thank you to the East Timor Hearts Fund team and volunteers, the surgeons and medical team, all the amazing donors, and everyone involved for helping save my daughter's life. 

“The world needs more people like you.”

Alia said the donors, medical staff and East Timor Hearts Fund volunteers “will always be in my heart”.

“I am looking forward to going back to school and hopefully achieving my dream of becoming a doctor.”

Obrigada (thank you) for helping us to Mend Alia’s Broken Heart.

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