Philippine patient adjusts to normal life thanks to Calgarians

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Maria Fe Labial is seen lying in the hospital bed while recovering from surgery for a spinal implant to help treat her scoliosis.
Maria Fe Labial is seen lying in the hospital bed while recovering from surgery.
Dr. Christine P. Oriel

It has been over eight months since Maria Fe Labial underwent her surgery for a spinal implant to help treat her scoliosis.

Thanks to the fundraising efforts of former Miss Universe Canada Riza Santos last winter, Labial was able to get her much needed surgery in April during her school vacation.

Labial’s spinal implant cost $5,000 CDN with additional doctor and medical fees, but through the support of Santos’ fundraising efforts the bill was covered.

“To my sponsors, especially to Miss Riza Santos and family, I would like to express my infinite thanks to all of you,” says Labial “I know that my millions and even billions of thanks is not enough to pay price of your help.”

Labial understands that the work Santos did for her in Canada could not have been accomplished without the generosity of others and is grateful for those that were touched by her story.

“To all my sponsors in Calgary, thank you for your help even though you don’t know me yet,” says Labial. “I’m glad that in this modern and complex world, there are still people who have good hearts. I am indebted to you all.”

It was a long five years for Labial as she waited for the opportunity to fix her spine. After years of praying, she is glad her life can finally go back to normal thanks to the goodness of the Calgary community led by Santos.

Labial is now back in school as a sophomore student taking her Bachelor of Secondary Education major in English at Camiguin Polytechnic State College.

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