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news News Thursday, June 25, 2020 Thursday, June 25, 2020 2:07 PM - Thursday, June 25, 2020 2:07 PM

Meet Andy

Meet Andy

Andy, 20, has a captivating smile and exudes positivity. He believes in the importance of following one’s dreams and never giving up on goals, no matter how many challenges life presents. At the age of 16, Andy suffered an acid burn in his home country of Ghana. He refused to let that serious injury dampen his spirit. Andy spent about seven months in a local hospital. While he was well cared for, it soon became clear that Andy needed a specialized level of treatment for his burn wounds. Family and friends, led by Andy’s eldest brother Rifkin, researched burn care around the world and discovered Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston.

Andy was transferred to the Boston Shriners Hospital, which was his first time in the United States. He has returned to Boston twice for surgeries and physical therapy. Andy shared that when he first arrived at the hospital, he was scared and uncertain about his new surroundings. He did not know what to expect or how long he would have to stay. He was not sure how the Boston hospital would be different from the facility in Ghana, or what his treatment would involve. Andy quickly developed a level of comfort with the nurses and doctors who were caring for him. “Now, I feel more confident and positive when I am around them, and they have helped me in so many ways. I am grateful for all of them,” said Andy.

Andy understands how difficult it can be to overcome a serious burn injury. He sometimes struggled to deal with his injuries and maintain his positivity. “When I was down, it was really tough for me. I was an innocent happy boy trying to live a better life. I am now grateful for how far I have come, and I will never give up,” said Andy. He has a message to share with other patients struggling with their own injuries: “You may be going through tough times now and it definitely won’t be easy, but don’t focus on the negativity. Don’t give up, keep praying. I have been there before. It’s a tough ladder to climb, but if the journey wasn’t challenging the destination wouldn’t be rewarding.”

Andy is a resilient young man who believes in the importance of keeping his injury in perspective. Andy’s positivity and his faith help fuel his determination to fulfill his dreams. His passion is soccer and he has been playing the sport all his life. Andy aspires to play professionally one day, like his father. His favorite positions are left and right wing, and he loves spending time on the soccer pitch. When Andy is not playing soccer, he can often be found watching games and studying plays.

Andy is extremely grateful and wants to extend a special thank you to everyone at the Boston Shriners Hospital who has helped him along the way – from hospital staff caring for him to the Shriners and donors who help make our specialty care available to any child who needs it.

Andy in school roomAndy playing soccer