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Disability in Africa: ‘I’m no longer ashamed of my disabled daughter’

30 October 2018

When Agnes Mutemi became aware that her first-born daughter Nambia had poor mental health at the age of 2, her first response was once to be ashamed. She remained in denial for a number of years till she discovered a college which specialized in taking good care of kids with disabilities.

The 38-year-old mom of 3 says that the majority of her discomfort was once precipitated by way of the gawping, stares and in poor health remedy she confronted each day. “All over the primary years, I ceaselessly used to invite myself why I were given any such kid.

“It was once tricky strolling round with my kid as a result of the appearance I were given,” says Ms Mutemi, who lives in Katoloni village in Japanese Kenya. Agnes says Nambia had asphyxia, a situation that happens when a toddler is disadvantaged of oxygen right through the start procedure. Consequently, Nambia’s limbs have been weakened and her psychological building affected.

‘Healed’

After a large number of physiotherapy classes, Agnes enrolled her daughter in an early formative years schooling college when she was once 3.
“It was once best after Nambia spent six years in Nursery College and nonetheless could not do staple items that I realised one thing was once improper,” says Agnes, including that the price of scientific handle a mentally in poor health kid in Kenya could be very excessive.

“I had sought after my daughter to have a profession – to transform a trainer, a professor or a physician, however that was once to not be.”
At one level, Agnes even made up our minds to stick at house with Nambia since she wasn’t being authorised in “commonplace” colleges.
However what in reality modified Agnes’ existence was once assembly an outdated pal who urged her to take her kid to a different college.

“After seeing adjustments in my daughter I after all authorised her situation. “I am now not in denial,” she stated.

Nambia, now elderly 14, is going to the Machakos Unit for the Mentally Challenged, staffed by way of native and international volunteers from British building charity VSO. She has studying disabilities, however this has now not dampened her high-spirited nature and she or he loves taking part in along with her classmates. And regardless of being in large part non-verbal, Nambia is a lively youngster and has advanced a robust bond along with her mom.

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