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Children of China Pediatrics Foundation: Transforming Lives

Medical Orphan Care Volunteer Opportunities  Ways to Help China

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  Written by RainbowKids on 16 Sep 2015

Their Mission

The Children of China Pediatrics Foundation (CCPF) provides care for children with disabilities in China’s orphanages by providing exceptional multi-specialty medical treatment and hands-on training and medical education for their providers and caregivers.

As a not-for-profit, non-partisan organization, CCPF sends all-volunteer pediatric medical teams from the United States to China to perform surgeries on orphans to correct disfiguring birth defects and disabilities, and to share medical information, surgical techniques and hands-on training in rehabilitation with Chinese colleagues and orphanage caregivers.


Thousands of children remain in Chinese orphanages because medical conditions or other disabilities make them “less likely” to be adopted. With your help, these children can receive life-transforming care.

Since its inception in 1998, CCPF has embarked on fourteen medical missions in six different locations throughout China.  Almost 500 surgeries have been performed on over 700 children and over 1000 Chinese medical professionals and caregivers have participated in CCPF's educational programs.  On top of that, twenty Chinese surgeons have been granted CCPF Traveling Fellowships to come to the United States to observe and administrate procedures at New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital. 

 The Need

Orphan care continues to improve thanks to China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs’ launch of the Tomorrow Plan for Rehabilitation of Handicapped Orphans through Operations (Tomorrow Plan), which provides medical care to orphans. The Government’s increasing commitment to its children and healthcare in general as well NGOs carrying out similar work are also making substantial contributions.

Significant gaps remain, however, including the provision of more complicated procedures, post-operative care, rehabilitation, overall education and training, and infectious disease control. The children served by CCPF would not otherwise receive this care, and their caregivers would not receive this level of training. With some of the nation’s top doctors on our medical team, CCPF has the capacity to significantly expand the scope of our services to meet these needs in China. 

The Beginning

Gena Palumbo founded CCPF in 1998, following the adoption of her second child, a healthy daughter from an orphanage in Nanjing, China in 1996. Like many parents, Ms. Palumbo was overjoyed and tremendously grateful for her children, but did not stop thinking about those left behind. She thought of the orphanage officials and medical personnel from whom she learned of the many children in orphanages with special needs and medical problems that require surgery. In many cases (e.g. cleft palate or eye problems) very minor surgeries would make an enormous difference in these children’s lives and health yet they were unlikely to ever receive the medical care to treat their underlying conditions.


Desperate to help, Gena responded by creating an organization with one simple goal in mind: to improve the everyday lives of Chinese orphans withdisabilities through medical intervention. With the help of a team of doctors, Gena successfully created a viable medical program, which after great efforts, was approved by China’s Ministry of CivilAffairs and the Ministry of Public Health; with the help of New York-area adoptive parents, funds were raised. In 1998. Ms. Palumbo mobilized a team of volunteer doctors and surgeons to travel to Harbin, China for what would become the first of CCPF’s annual medical missions to provide surgical and medical care to children living in China’s orphanages.

How They Do It

Annual Medical/Surgical Missions:

  • The all-volunteer medical/surgical team is lead by CCPF's Medical Director, David P. Roye, Jr., MD
  • The all-volunteer medical/surgical team is led by CCPF’s Medical Director, David P. Roye, Jr., MD,
  • Specialties include: pediatric surgical specialists in orthopaedic, urologic, general and plastic surgery; anesthesiologists, pediatricians, nurses, operating room technicians and specialists in infectious diseases and pulmonary in the recovery areas
  • Common disorders treated include: cleft palettes and lips, disfigured fingers and toes, dislocated or misaligned hips, hernia repair, and genital and reproductive organ repair


  • The all-volunteer team consists of physiatrists, speech, occupationa and physical therapists and orthotics.  This team is lead by Dr. Heakyung Kim, Director of Pediatric Phusical Medicine and rahabilitation Service at the New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital.  One of the country's leading physiatrist, Dr. Kim speicalizes in the care for children with neuromuscular disorders
  • Common disorders include: cerebral palsy, neuromuscular disorders

Education: Teaching and sharing of medical knowledge is integral to CCPF's work

  • Every mission incorporates education with didactic lectures and hands-on demonstrations
  • Traveling Fellowships are awarded to up to five Chinese surgeons each year to ovserve surgical techniques and administrative procedures in New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanely Children's Hospital for three-four weeks

How the money is used

CCPF is funded through the generosity of individual donors. Fundraising through annual donor appeals and special events supports CCPF’s program work of annual medical and rehabilitation missions, and Traveling Fellowships. To meet their goals of expansion to reach more children and educate their caregivers, additional funds are essential.page3image4224

CCPF’s Program Expenses:
  • All direct services are carried out by volunteers and a working board
  • Physicians generously pay for their own airfare
  • Transportation and housing is covered for essential team members
  • Payments are made to our host Chinese Hospital for use of operating rooms and patient beds
  • Most medical supplies are donated
  • Essential medical supplies are purchased and transported to China
  • Airfare and housing are paid for Traveling Fellows 

CCPF actively seeks volunteers for a variety of postitions including: Medical/Surgical/Rehabilitation Team Member, Non-Clinical Mission Team Members, Volunteer Translators, Event Help, Mission Preparation, and Board Membership.  If you are interested in volunteering with CCPF, please contact them via email or call 212-248-7561. 





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