This is Grace. She was born with a cleft lip. It used to be a life long disability that resulted in stigma and discrimination against the whole family. Now through partnerships with CURE Hospital and Queen’s Hospital in Blantyre these children can have life changing surgery every week! You can see from the smile on her mom’s face what a difference the surgery has made!
This year in February we had 4 Doctor of Physiotherapy students from Texas doing their final placement with us. The children really benefited from all the therapy they received. All four of the students did a great job! We wish them great success in their upcoming exams. Several of them wish to work with kids with disabilities in the future, maybe even back here in Africa!
Kathy was supervising the students and as a result visited several of the Outreach Clinics. While at the Mchezi Outreach Clinic the man who runs that site came to speak with her. He wanted her to know how happy the whole community was about how we had helped Greg. When we met Greg he had a problem with his legs. Our physiotherapist assessed him and then we took him to see the Orthopedic Surgeon from CURE Hospital who recommended surgery. CURE hospital does surgery free for children with disabilities. Greg had his surgery and is now walking well and going to school! Way to go!
Another of our partners is the Ministry of Hope, Crisis Nursery. COBT provides physiotherapy and special equipment to any of their children with disabilities through our ABC Outreach. They in turn bring teams to visit us to see what we are doing. This month their visiting team brought much needed formula. We provide formula to families who can’t breast feed their baby. Harry, our Rehabilitation Technicians is receiving some formula to give to a family in Mngwangwa, one Outreach community. The parents of twins walked 17 kilometer’s to our main centre. Lilongwe had not had good rains for several years so the family didn’t have food to eat at home and the mom was unable to produce any breastmilk. Malnutrition in the early days of life can lead to disabilities or even death. People in her neighbourhood told them we might be able to help. The mom had delivered the twins at home. She had not even taken the babies to the hospital to be checked but came straight to us! We gave the mom formula and also put her on our nutrition program so that she could receive porridge to help her breastmilk to come in. We also sent her to the nearby hospital to get the babies checked out. The harvest is now in so we hope the family will get back on their feet soon!