A mother-of-three is looking for help to pay for surgery after an awful accident left her with her lip burned on to her chest.
15 years ago Leonor Niusa was working at a farm in Zamboanga City, the Philippines, when the candle she used as a source of light caused a fire in a gasoline storage room.
The mum escaped the fire but she was suffered horrific burns across her face and body, which left her lips attached to her chest when her injuries healed.
Leonor is now pleading for help to pay for surgery:
Following the accident, Leonor’s burns went untreated as her family feared they could not afford medical help. Her injuries mean her movements are limited and the mum, now 43 years old, has not been able to find permanent work since the fire.
In an attempt to pay for the operation, Leonor and her young son have been travelling through various towns asking for donations.
Locals are now hoping to raise money for a relatively straight-forward operation which will detach her mouth from her chest and allow the mother to work again.
One neighbourhood Leonor visited was home to a man named Justin Quiban, who gave the pair food and water and filmed the video of the desperate woman.
I just saw this picture from Facebook posted by Justin Quiban from Zamboanga City, however he wasn't able to get their names. This was taken yesterday June 25th at 1pm. I would like to help if this is the only way. #KMJS I hope you can see this to reach out. God bless you. pic.twitter.com/Cskr8EvMpW
— Scarlett Hope (@julia_batalla) June 26, 2019
Speaking of the Leonor’s injuries, Justin said:
Zamboanga City said that she hasn’t been to the doctor ever since the accident.
Her family chose to treat her burns in their house because they are afraid they will not be able to pay the medical bills.
After meeting Leonor, Justin, with the help of some friends, went to look for her house in Zamboanga and gave her some donations. The group said it would be better if she could get the operation and live normally again.
In March 2019, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte signed a Universal Health Care Bill into law which automatically enrols all Filipino citizens in the National Health Insurance Program, giving citizens access to the full continuum of health services they need, the World Health Organisation reports.
However, according to Expat Arrivals not all medical procedures are covered by the scheme and medical expenses are still often paid for by the individual patient.
The NHS recommends immediately seeking medical attention for large or deep burns and cooling the injury with cool or lukewarm water.
Hopefully Leonor will soon raise the funds to be able to afford the surgery and work again.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.