Stories of Hope 2022

"Do your little bit of good where you are, it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world." ~Desmond Tutu


It is a story South Africans know all too well.

A mother with a meagre salary being the sole provider for her family, with very little hope of change, is a picture we’ve seen many times.

Add immense daily pain with every step that you take to the mix and you have Mirriam’s story.

Humble and hard-working

Mirriam Ramasimong works as a cleaner at LIFE Eugene Marais Hospital in Pretoria. The work is hard, but rewarding. Everyone who works with Mirriam knows that she is cheerful, hard-working and, most of all, humble.

No-one would guess that, under all of that joy and caring for others, Mirriam was struggling every, single day.

Operation Healing HandsMirriam

Disaster strikes

Mirriam’s simple but fulfilling life was disrupted when she was involved in a motor vehicle accident. In the accident, Mirriam dislocated her right hip and broke the left. As a result, she developed severe osteoarthritis. A hip replacement was what Mirriam needed, and she needed it fast. The waiting list for such operations were however very long, and Mirriam – unable to afford such surgery at a private institution - seemed doomed to live with her pain for a long, long time.

Bravely keeping on

Being her family’s only provider, Mirriam simply had to keep on working. She had always enjoyed her job, but the pain in her hip made it increasingly difficult for her to do her best. Outwardly, Mirriam kept smiling but on the inside her courage was wearing thin.

A miracle!

Four years after Mirriam was put on the waiting list for hip replacement surgery at her local government hospital, Operation Healing Hands came into being. This non-profit organisation aimed to provide life-changing surgery to patients truly in need. Their first patient? None other than Mirriam!

At the time, most of the surgeons involved in the organisation were affiliated with Mirriam’s workplace, LIFE Eugene Marais Hospital, and they knew of her struggles. They also knew that no-one was more deserving than cheerful, hard-working and humble Mirriam.

A life changed for the better

Mirriam received her hip replacement surgery in 2016. For three years now, she has been able to work to provide for her family – pain free! Her gratitude knows no bounds and she shows it in true Mirriam-fashion: with a smile!

~ Article by Magriet Stander


Become part of the OHH family. By making a small donation you can help us to keep on helping our fellow South Africans by giving them second chances on life! Every little bit can go a long way!

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