Hanwha helps Iraqi girl walk again

July 22, 2014
Amer Alwan Ibreesam, left, looks on as professor Cho Jae-ho of Ajou University Hospital examines the leg of his daughter Tiba at the hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province. Hanwha Engineering and Construction brought Tiba from Iraq to get surgery on her leg in Korea. (Courtesy of Hanwha Engineering and Construction)

Amer Alwan Ibreesam, left, looks on as professor Cho Jae-ho of Ajou University Hospital examines the leg of his daughter Tiba at the hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province. Hanwha Engineering and Construction brought Tiba from Iraq to get surgery on her leg in Korea. (Courtesy of Hanwha Engineering and Construction)

By Yoon Ja-young

Tiba Amer Alwan, a 5-year-old girl living in Iraq, went out to welcome her father coming home from work last November. She fell down and broke her right leg.

She underwent four surgeries, as it aggravated into an acute osteomyelitis, but her leg did not get any better. As half of her tibia was lost, amputation seemed inevitable.

Upon hearing the news in April, Hanwha Engineering & Construction, where Tiba’s father works as a guard supervisor in the company’s Bismayah New City construction site, set out to help.

The company immediately invited Tiba and her father to Korea, and supported her in getting surgery at Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province.

After three surgeries, the surgeons got rid of the dead bone and inflammation, and restored the remaining bone. Now, Tiba is getting rehabilitation treatment, and is expected to walk out of the hospital without crutches next month.

“We successfully completed the operation on Tiba. As she is young, I am confident she will walk again when the bone grows,” said Professor Cho Jae-ho, who led the surgery.

“Thanks to the special relationship with Hanwha which is engaged in a new urban construction project in Iraq, my daughter got the best treatment in Korea without having to worry about expenses,” said Amer Alwan Ibreesam, Tiba’s father.

“I sincerely appreciate Hanwha and Ajou University Hospital for their warm help,” he said.

Moon Seok, an executive of Hanwha, said the company will continue making contributions to Iraq.

“I am so glad that Tiba can walk again. We will make our best efforts to help the Iraqi people through diverse social contribution programs, based on our chairman’s belief that we should help each other to go farther,” he said.

Hanwha Engineering and Construction is leading a Bismayah New City Construction Project in Iraq, the biggest overseas construction project ever won by a Korean firm.

The company has been operating a special team to assimilate with locals, running diverse cultural exchanges and medical volunteering programs.

The city will be completed by 2019, with 100,000 new homes.

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