Friday, February 1st, 2013 -- Because through his volunteer work he has alleviated suffering, enhanced health, and brought joy to thousands of children and their families Dr. Jacob Heydemann was awarded the 2012 Outstanding Philanthropist Award by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
For 28 years, Dr. Heydemann and his team have donated their services at Hospital de la Familia in Cd. Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico. His team consists of Dr. Cynthia Fisher, Fabian Calderon and until recently, Trey Hancock.
Dr. Heydemann is a Surgeon in Adult and Pediatric Orthopaedics in El Paso. After arriving to El Paso from his fellowship at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Dr. Heydemann was introduced by FEMAP volunteers to the great need that poor and marginalized children had for an orthopeadic pediatrician in the municipality of Cd. Juarez.
“In 1985, he volunteered himself thus embarking on a quest to grant children access to specialized medical care, regardless of nationality, socio-economic level or geographic setting,” said Anna Alemán, Executive Director, FEMAP Foundation.
After realizing that these patients did not have access to physical therapy, Dr. Heydemann ensured to bring aboard the best pediatric physical therapist so that she would teach the parents of these young patients the necessary exercises to either rehab children who had undergone surgery or help those who can benefit from daily movement.
Within months, word spread about this amazing doctor and children from the neighboring states of Coahuila, Durango, Sinaloa, and Sonora began arriving to the Dr. Heydemann Pedi Orthopeadic Clinic at FEMAP’s Hospital de la Familia. Children with club feet, hip dislocation and other physical birth defects now had access to an orthopeadic doctor who is considered one of the best in his field.
Hospital de la Familia is a private nonprofit in Cd. Juarez that provides 600,000 medical services to 180,000 people a year. Dr. Heydemann and his team have treated more than 7,500 children through 28,000 physical therapy sessions and 30,000 medical consultations. 812 surgeries and counting have been conducted. When all else failed, Dr. Heydemann has been known to pay for surgeries out of his own pocket. He donates 100% of his time and expertise. His sole payment has been to see these children walk for the first time towards their parents or grasp toys with their little hands. We have seen the life-changing effects that your work has had on these children and their families.
“Dr. Heydemann has inspired many of us through his noble work. He has changed the world for the better and he truly exemplifies what it is to be humanitarian and a philanthropist,” adds Alemán.