Donations pour for girl with broken armin Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay

By Rhaydz B. Barcia


Cash donations from Filipinos within and outside the country have poured in to finance the operation of Vanessa Bombales, the 10-year old daughter of Salvacion Eslita, whose arm bone was fractured when a coconut fell on it at the height Typhoon “Rolly” in Barangay Cabasan in Cagraray Island in Bacacay, Albay.


To recall, this reporter wrote about Vanessa’s plight after her mother Salvacion, left homeless by super Typhoon “Rolly,” personally appealed for help so that her daughter’s broken right arm would be operated upon as they do not have the money for the operation.


Earlier, Salvacion’s family was one of the beneficiaries of tarp, rope and solar lamp from the United Nation’s (UN) International Organization for Migration.


When Vanessa’s story was published in Bicol Mail, Rappler and Manila Times, cash donations for her operation poured in coursed through Engr. Ronaldo D. Ebrada, president of Legazpi City “Host” MJF Lions Club.


“The spirit of Bayanihan among the Filipinos truly lives on as there are so many good Samaritans in the middle of a pandemic and in dire situations. I’m amazed and happy as the intention to help Vanessa is overwhelming where donors contributed from P10 pesos to P10,000, the biggest contribution,” Ebrada said.


So far, the total cash donations for Vanessa’s operation have already reached P82,000.


Reading Vanessa’s story, some physicians who belong to the Rotary Club of Legazpi West headed by Roy Pel, also offered to help her.


This reporter also coordinated with Dr. Bernie Redoblado through the help of Rolly Esguera, former Legazpi City chief of police, now PSO Legazpi head, Vanessa and her mother were brought to Legazpi City aboard a vehicle provided by the Ako Bicol partylist for the 10-year old girl check-up by an orthopedic specialist.


Vanessa underwent check-up and her broken right arm was stabilized by Redoblado, an orthopedic surgeon at the Estevez Memorial Hospital in Legazpi City.


Redoblado said that he will assess Vanessa’s case after conducting or repeating the X-ray for her fractured right arm.


“As much as possible, I don’t want Vanessa to undergo a surgery to lessen the harm as it will affect her development. For a 10-year old child to be operated on or should a stainless will be put up to her broken arm, there will be a big change and impact on her body,” he said.


“For now, Vanessa, don’t need an operation yet. But I will observe her for 15 days, if there is healing, then will finally conclude if there’s a need for operation but please follow and observe what I am recommending for her safety and healing,” the doctor told Vanessa’s mother.


Vanessa will go back to Redoblado’s clinic on Dec. 15 for follow-up check-up to assess if surgery is needed to be done.


Redoblado, 62, also said that if there are similar cases like Vanessa, he is willing to help and to bring the patients to his clinic.

For now, Vanessa and her mother are staying at the residence of Evangeline Imperial, one of the officers of Legazpi City Host Lions Club while waiting for the Dec. 15 check up.


Used clothing was also given to her by Lois and Sophia, daughters of Evangeline.


The Lions Club opted to adopt Vanessa and her mother for 15 days to provide proper nutritional requirements for the 10-year-old girl.


The Legazpi City Host Lions Club also decided to build the house of Vanessa’s family.


The P83,000 cash donation is being reserved for Vanessa’s operation. If there is no need for it, the money will instead be added to the budget for her family’s house construction.