World Clubfoot Day is Coming!

World Clubfoot Day California 2017

Did you know that June 3rd has been designated as World Clubfoot Day by the Ponseti International Association (PIA)? Dr. Ponseti (1914-2009) can be credited for creating the "Ponseti Method" which is the preferred non-surgical treatment option for clubfoot, so what a better way to celebrate than on his birthday?!

For the past 2 years, Dr. Nitza Rodriguez alongside my friend, and Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S Secretary Jill Harold have been putting on a World Clubfoot Day California in Mission Viejo, CA every June, and this year is no exception. The past two years, their Wold Clubfoot Day California events have raised a combined $5,000.00 for Miraclefeet the first year and for Ponseti International the second year. We are honored to have been selected as this year's World Clubfoot Day California charity recipient!

I had some time to chat with Dr. R {as she is affectionately known by her patients and their families}, and Jill about their event and what we should expect at this year's celebration.

ME: What are you goals ad dreams for WCDC?

Dr. R: The goal is to create a fun day to celebrate the amazing journey so many families have been through. The first time I went to Iowa it was Dr. Ponseti's birthday! I remember being in Iowa one year where they had the Ponseti Races. It was so so fun to see Dr. Ponseti with all of his patients. I remember families greeting each other and talking and I loved that feeling of community. I knew then one day I would host events in California. I reached out to Jill Harold and Tony Spineto the first year to partner with me and make this an annual event. My dream is that clubfoot patients and their families do not feel alone and that we can educate the public about one of the most common birth defects and that my little ones in clinic grow up feeling like the sky is the limit.

In my clinic I see so many patients who were left uncorrected, or with a complex clubfoot and I feel that we need to raise awareness about the proper treatment for clubfoot which is why we have chosen to raise funds for Clubfoot C.A.R.E.S this year.

Me: Dr. R, Can you describe your personal relationship with Ponseti, and fond memories from your time spent with him?

Dr. R: I feel fortunate that I spent over a month with Dr. Ponseti in his clinic while I was a resident and was able to return several times after. This afforded me the opportunity to have really great conversations with him about the history of clubfoot and how much he struggled to get his message across to the community. Anyone that met him knows that his energy was infectious and he was such a passionate man! He loved to speak Spanish and we had wonderful conversations about his desires and dreams for clubfoot and how he really hoped his message would not be lost once he was gone.

I have to say my favorite time with him was after clinic, we would eat lunch together since he only worked in the mornings. We would sometimes sit there for hours talking about his time in Spain and Mexico and then in Iowa. He was so animated and so funny! I loved his humanity and compassion and passion for what he believed in and the love for his patients and their families. For sure my time in Iowa was some of my happiest times in life, I really do feel that meeting him ignited a fire in me that will never burn out! I am forever grateful for the experience and for the time I had with him. I feel he not only prepared me on the techniques but also on the social aspects. He told me "The road will not be easy but you were born to defy odds". And that has been my motto and what I tell any one going through a hard time. Because the truth is all of us at some point in our lives encounter a physical, mental, emotional or economic barrier that we have to push through.

Wow! So inspirational! The 2018 World Clubfoot Day California is "Olympics" themed which means that you'll want to come ready to sweat! They will have relay races, a kid's dash, and even a bicycle/tricycle parade! With activities like, face painting, tattoos, photo booth, and a puppet show, you will not want to miss it! Mark your calendars for Saturday, June 9th.

For more information and details you can head on over to Facebook . If you would like more information on how to be a part of the big day email my girl Jill, or check out the World Clubfoot Day page on the C.A.R.E.S. website.

#clubfoot #California #WCDC2018

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