Sierra Leone, Freetown, October 2011.\n\nJoyce Mansaray\nElizabeth was 27 weeks pregnant when the rebels attacked Freetown during the civil war. As she was fleeing, she suffered a fall that caused her to go into labor prematurely. Weighing only 3.5 pounds at birth, Elizabeth’s daughter, Joyce, had severely bowed legs, which prevented her from walking for the first ten years of her life. \nBecause of her condition, she became very shy.\nAt the age of five, Joyce had her first surgery, which helped to release the pressure on her Achilles tendons but did nothing about the curvature of her legs. After a second unsuccessful surgery, Joyce and her mother were referred to Mercy Ships. On the Africa Mercy, metal plates were surgically inserted into Joyce’s legs to redirect the growth of her bones, allowing them to straighten out over time.\nDespite having missed a year of school because of her surgeries, Joyce is back on track. Now in grade six, she can walk to and from school on her own and play her favorite games with the other children.