Help! Spinal Surgery for Fernando

This fundraiser is to financially support our friend and Cali-Baja community leader Fernando to pay for medical expenses for urgent spinal surgery that is needed to prevent him from losing further mobility in his back and legs. His doctors have stated that if he does not have this surgery he may lose full mobility in his legs and have more severe pain.
***una descripción de esta recaudación de fondos en español está disponible al final de esta página***
The spinal injury keeps pressing on his nerves and could damage them permanently leading to an inability to move normally or worse.  Every donation of any amount helps get one step closer to giving him hope to regain his active and community work energy to recover and heal. The donations will be transferred to a protected savings account in the USA to pay for the surgery and post operation treatment. For those who don't know Fernando well, his bio showing his dedication to community initiatives is available at the end of this page. 


Hi! My name is Fernando, and this is my story: Since almost 2 years ago (December 2015) I have a lower back injury: a protruded hernia in my lower back, between L4 & L5, which constantly presses my nerves causing me pain in the lower back and leg, especially in my right leg.

This injury is not common in young people, which was doctors were very surprised when they saw my studies and asked me about my symptoms, considering that I just have gotten 23 years old when the injury manifested, however the degenerative process had been worsening for some years by that time. This injury is a degenerative process; that means that advances with time.

For me it’s difficult to share this and to ask for help, because I feel ashamed for not being able to solve this problem alone, considering that I was always doing a lot of things by myself and to help others. However I have realized that strength is not doing everything alone, strength is also to realize that you can’t do everything by yourself and to rely on others to solve problems and to have a better life.

Before my injury I had been a very active person, I was always doing things; exercising, studying, working and doing social projects in the non governmental organization I founded to support youth and teach them skills.

25124460_1509811601.2663_funddescription.jpg(Fernando, pictured in the center, participating in a United Nations Association of San Diego event on the Sustainable Development Goals before his condition worsened) 


Having an injury that causes me a disability has made me change several things in my life:

-I’m no longer able to run, jump or walk more than 15 minutes continuously or stand by more than 10 minutes continuously due to the pain it causes.
-I can sit only in special types of chairs, I cannot sit in chairs without back support, without cushion due to the pain it causes.
-I cannot carry anything heavier than 10 pounds.
-I have to take everyday Tramacet in the morning and Pregabaline at night to help me with my pain, even with these drugs I always have pain, every day.

This is why I’m asking you for your help: I need to have a surgery to get the hernia removed and to get a vertebral spacer to prevent that my vertebras fuse with each other.

This surgery is not only to help alleviate my pain, but mostly to prevent that I lose mobility of my lower body, because doctors have told me that I need to have the procedure as soon as possible, because I have almost 2 years with the injury and because if the hernia keeps pressing my nerves they could damage them permanently and lose mobility of my legs.

25124460_1509811225.2784_funddescription.jpg(Fernando enjoying the ocean before his disability worsened)


I am requesting your support to raise $2,700 U.S. Dollars.
Since December 2015 I have been saving money, reducing my expenses to the most needed things and I have saved up approximately $5,000 dollars so far. However, the total cost of the surgery is roughly $7,700 U.S. Dollars, plus the physical therapy that I would need after the surgery and in the public health insurance they don’t offer me the vertebral spacer for the surgery and I don’t have private health insurance, so that is why I need to raise an additional $2,700 U.S. Dollars.

I plan to have the surgery in January 2018, so I’m kindly asking for your help to ensure that I can pay for this surgery.

25124460_1509811664.5213_funddescription.jpg(Evidence of the Medical Diagnostics)
25124460_1509811682.5953_funddescription.jpg(Evidence of the Medical Diagnostics)


People that know me would tell you that I’m an extrovert person, but the ones that know me from before the injury can tell the difference, I have tried not to be defeated by my problem, to be the same outgoing person that I was before, the always laughing person, but the truth is that bearing this pain and changes in my life is not easy, I only want to be able to keep walking and to reduce the pain, even if it’s just a little bit, I want to keep doing social projects that benefit members of the community and to accomplish my life goal, to be a full-time professor-researcher and help to reach solutions for the problems that affect society, and I know I will only have that chance with your help. EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS :-)

Thank you friends and those who may not know me, but are willing to support me to regain my strength and feel better, it means a lot and I will never forget your assistance.



25124460_1509783715.8013_funddescription.jpg(Fernando speaking at a Model U.N. Conference that he organized)

25124460_1509811512.1298_funddescription.jpg(Fernando was in great health before his condition worsened)


Fernando is an International Relations graduate passionate for social development, specifically for youth. He is founder of the NGO "Youth with Vision," which he founded and has directed since 2013 and has managed and executed different social projects for fostering youth leadership, especially in public schools. He graduated with honorific mention with 96 of 100 academic points. He studied a semester abroad in Brazil and he is fluent in English and Portuguese (also Spanish as native language). He's very passionate about Model United Nations, he has participated as delegate in MUN's in Mexico, USA, and Brazil, and has won awards of Best Speaker and Best Negotiator. He has been President and Secretary-General twice in JCVMUN 2014 and JCVMUN 2015 in Mexicali, Mexico. He has traveled to different countries in Europe, Eurasia, and South America (also US and different parts of Mexico). He believes in global citizenship and cross cultural understanding as a key to achieve a better world. Among these things, Fernando has also played a key role in organizing binational Model United Nations Conferences, taught English and Portuguese lessons, and is currently working on a disability awareness campaign.

Este evento de recaudación de fondos respalda a nuestro amigo y líder de la comunidad de Cali-Baja, Fernando, para pagar los gastos médicos de la cirugía espinal urgente que se necesita para evitar que pierda movilidad en la espalda y las piernas.

La lesión de la columna vertebral sigue presionando sus nervios y podría dañarlos de forma permanente, lo que puede provocar que no pueda moverse normalmente o peor. Cada donación de cualquier cantidad ayuda a acercarse un paso más para darle la esperanza de recuperar su energía de trabajo activa y comunitaria para recuperarse y sanar. Las donaciones se transferirán a una cuenta de ahorro protegida en los EE. UU. Para pagar la cirugía y el tratamiento posterior a la operación. Para aquellos que no conocen bien a Fernando, su biografía que muestra su dedicación a las iniciativas comunitarias está disponible al final de esta página.


¡Hola! Mi nombre es Fernando, y esta es mi historia: desde hace casi 2 años (diciembre de 2015) tengo una lesión en la parte inferior de la espalda: una hernia protruida en la parte baja de la espalda, entre L4 y L5, que constantemente presiona mis nervios y me causa dolor en el la parte inferior de la espalda y la pierna, especialmente en la pierna derecha.

Esta lesión no es común en los jóvenes, y los médicos se sorprendieron mucho cuando vieron mis estudios y me preguntaron acerca de mis síntomas, teniendo en cuenta que solo tenía 23 años cuando se manifestó la lesión, sin embargo, el proceso degenerativo había empeorado para algunos años en ese momento. Esta lesión es un proceso degenerativo; eso significa que avanza con el tiempo.

Para mí es difícil compartir esto y pedir ayuda, porque me da vergüenza no poder resolver este problema solo, teniendo en cuenta que siempre estaba haciendo muchas cosas por mi cuenta y ayudando a los demás. Sin embargo, me he dado cuenta de que la fuerza no está haciendo todo solo, la fortaleza es también darse cuenta de que no puedes hacer todo por ti mismo y confiar en los demás para resolver problemas y tener una vida mejor.

Antes de mi lesión, había sido una persona muy activa, siempre estaba haciendo cosas; ejercitar, estudiar, trabajar y hacer proyectos sociales en la organización no gubernamental que fundé para apoyar a los jóvenes y enseñarles habilidades.


Tener una lesión que me causa una discapacidad me ha hecho cambiar varias cosas en mi vida:

-Yo ya no puedo correr, saltar o caminar más de 15 minutos de forma continua o aguantar más de 10 minutos de forma continua debido al dolor que causa.
-Puedo solo sentarme en tipos especiales de sillas, no puedo sentarme en sillas sin respaldo, sin cojín debido al dolor que causa.
-No puedo cargar nada más pesado que 10 libras.
-Tengo que tomar Tramacet todos los días en la mañana y Pregabalina en la noche para ayudarme con mi dolor, incluso con estas drogas siempre tengo dolor, todos los días.

Es por eso que le pido su ayuda: necesito una cirugía para extirpar la hernia y obtener un espaciador vertebral para evitar que mis vértebras se fusionen entre sí.

Esta cirugía no es solo para ayudar a aliviar mi dolor, sino principalmente para evitar que pierda la movilidad de la parte inferior del cuerpo, porque los médicos me han dicho que debo someterme al procedimiento lo antes posible, porque tengo casi 2 años con la lesión. y porque si la hernia sigue presionando mis nervios, podrían dañarlos permanentemente y perder la movilidad de mis piernas.


Estoy solicitando su apoyo para recaudar $ 2,700 dólares estadounidenses.
Desde diciembre de 2015 he estado ahorrando dinero, reduciendo mis gastos a las cosas más necesarias y hasta el momento he ahorrado aproximadamente $ 5,000 dólares. Sin embargo, el costo total de la cirugía es de aproximadamente $ 7,700 dólares estadounidenses, más la terapia física que necesitaría después de la cirugía y en el seguro público de salud no me ofrecen el espaciador vertebral para la cirugía y no tengo servicios privados. seguro de salud, por eso necesito recaudar $ 2,700 dólares estadounidenses adicionales.

Planeo tener la cirugía en enero de 2018, por lo que le pido amablemente su ayuda para garantizar que pueda pagar esta cirugía.


La gente que me conoce te diría que soy una persona extrovertida, pero los que me conocen antes de la lesión pueden notar la diferencia, he intentado no ser derrotado por mi problema, ser la misma persona extrovertida que era antes, la persona que siempre se ríe, pero la verdad es que soportar este dolor y los cambios en mi vida no es fácil, solo quiero seguir caminando y reducir el dolor, aunque solo sea un poco, quiero seguir haciendo proyectos sociales que beneficien a los miembros de la comunidad y lograr mi meta de vida, ser un profesor-investigador de tiempo completo y ayudar a llegar a soluciones para los problemas que afectan a la sociedad, y sé que solo tendré esa oportunidad con su ayuda . CADA PEQUEÑO CUADRO CUENTA :-)

Gracias amigos y aquellos que quizás no me conocen, pero están dispuestos a ayudarme a recuperar mi fortaleza y me siento mejor, significa mucho y nunca olvidaré su ayuda.




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Bogey McKnight 
Chula Vista, CA
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