FORT MYERS, Fla., - A young girl with a debilitating disease is getting help from a local non profit organization.
Rosita Angelica is 14 years old. She’s already had more than a half dozen tumors removed from her face.
Her first tumor was at just 9 years old. Ever since, she’s been in and out of the hospital and surgeries.
She’s spending several days in the United States this week as doctors at Lee Health and Golisano Children’s Hospital try to figure out a cure.
“I was on a surfing trip in Nicaragua and some of my buddies said do you want to see this town where people live in a garbage dump?” said Ryan Jasper, founder of Beautiful Feet, a ministry that is helping over a hundred kids receive a better education in Cristo Rey, Nicaragua.
He recounts his first visit to the city, “I saw kids walking around in medical waste, broken glass, kids walking through trash dump looking for trash they can sell.”
Rosita is from Cristo Rey, Nicaragua.
“She stood out from other kids, she’s super smart, one of our top students. She’s sweet, kind, everybody loves her,” Jasper said.
She has a rare medical condition that causes tumors to grow in her nasal passage.
“My first reaction when they told me i had a tumor is death. I’m not going to be able to enjoy my life. I’m not going to be able to have time with my mom. Everything went down the road that day. It was really hard for me and my mom because we thought I would never enjoy my life like a regular girl,” Rosita said.
Doctors have not concluded that cancer is the cause but believe it could get worse. Rosita may lose her vision and she may not see her 20th birthday, Jasper said.
Rosita has had 7 surgeries to date to remove the tumors. Jasper says her tumors have become more frequent in recent years.
Beautiful Feet is partnering with First Assembly of God Church in Fort Myers to bring Rosita to America this week to get her seen by specialists.
“When i found out Rosita was sick, it broke my heart. At that point, I wanted to do whatever we could do to find a cure for her,” Jasper said.
Rosita says her diagnosis does not cloud her prognosis for herself.
“We decided to not let that keep us from enjoying life. We decided to enjoy life to the fullest.”
Rosita will be heading back to Nicaragua next week where doctors will be monitoring her progress there. She will be flown back to the United States for treatment as necessary.
To donate to Rosita’s GoFundMe, click here.