Siphesihle’s Story2018-06-12T10:43:14+00:00

Project Description

Celebrating Soccer World Cup 2018 – Pepe’s Story

In 2008, when Siphesihle, also known as Pepe, was only three months old, he fought with breathing problems. His grandmother, an employee at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital for over seventeen years, rushed him to the Hospital. He was immediately assisted and had a Tracheotomy operation (tracheostomy is the tube that is inserted in the trachea; this tube allows a person to breathe without the use of the nose or mouth). Pepe spent time in the Breatheasy Ward (E1) where his mother was trained to care for him before he could return home.

This was the start of a long 12-year journey for Pepe and his family, especially his guardian grandmother who in recent years, takes care of him and his mother. Having been provided with training from the Breatheasy Programme at the Hospital, she and Pepe’s carers were given the necessary training and skills to effectively look after Pepe whilst living at home. His grandmother told us that Pepe is a quiet person and she felt that he gravitated towards his drawing and staying indoors.

In 2016, Pepe had a Cricotracheal resection to remove the very narrow portion of his breathing pipe. He has needed many other surgeries including balloon dilatation, stents and special medication to keep his windpipe open, to prevent swelling and infection. Eventually, in October 2017, his tracheostomy tube was removed.

Whilst interviewing his grandmother, she expressed her gratitude to the hospital for their excellent service and dedication to the health of her grandson. She said: “Yoh, I never thought that Pepe’s breathing problem would ever change, Dr Shaziar Peer performed miracles on Pepe.”

Pepe is now a charming, outgoing 13-year-old boy from Khayelitsha, has a passion for drawing and has been pursuing it since the age of six. His drawings have improved over the years and have even managed to sell a few to various staff members and parents at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital. The staff also supply him with endless pencils, crayons and paper to encourage his dream. He also loves playing soccer and plays for his school team at St Joseph’s Home in Montana.

Pepe is looking forward to watching the 2018 Fifa World Cup Soccer, and he is hard at work on his drawings to fulfil his dream of becoming an artist. While he patiently awaits his voice to return to normal, he faces life with a huge smile.

Pepe’s sketching, soccer and smiles have kept him scoring

Celebrating Soccer World Cup 2018 – Pepe’s Story

Pepe’s sketching, soccer and smiles have kept him scoring

In 2008, when Siphesihle, also known as Pepe, was only three months old, he fought with breathing problems. His grandmother, an employee at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital for over seventeen years, rushed him to the Hospital. He was immediately assisted and had a Tracheotomy operation (tracheostomy is the tube that is inserted in the trachea; this tube allows a person to breathe without the use of the nose or mouth). Pepe spent time in the Breatheasy Ward (E1) where his mother was trained to care for him before he could return home.

This was the start of a long 12-year journey for Pepe and his family, especially his guardian grandmother who in recent years, takes care of him and his mother. Having been provided with training from the Breatheasy Programme at the Hospital, she and Pepe’s carers were given the necessary training and skills to effectively look after Pepe whilst living at home. His grandmother told us that Pepe is a quiet person and she felt that he gravitated towards his drawing and staying indoors.

In 2016, Pepe had a Cricotracheal resection to remove the very narrow portion of his breathing pipe. He has needed many other surgeries including balloon dilatation, stents and special medication to keep his windpipe open, to prevent swelling and infection. Eventually, in October 2017, his tracheostomy tube was removed.

Whilst interviewing his grandmother, she expressed her gratitude to the hospital for their excellent service and dedication to the health of her grandson. She said: “Yoh, I never thought that Pepe’s breathing problem would ever change, Dr Shaziar Peer performed miracles on Pepe.”

Pepe is now a charming, outgoing 13-year-old boy from Khayelitsha, has a passion for drawing and has been pursuing it since the age of six. His drawings have improved over the years and have even managed to sell a few to various staff members and parents at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital. The staff also supply him with endless pencils, crayons and paper to encourage his dream. He also loves playing soccer and plays for his school team at St Joseph’s Home in Montana.

Pepe is looking forward to watching the 2018 Fifa World Cup Soccer, and he is hard at work on his drawings to fulfil his dream of becoming an artist. While he patiently awaits his voice to return to normal, he faces life with a huge smile.

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