Hamze is a four-year-old refugee with cerebral palsy. He lives in Dadaab and Humanity & Inclusion (HI)’s physical therapists have provided him with rehabilitation care since birth.
His mother, Maryann, was also born in the camp in 1999, after her parents fled the war in Somalia. Her husband left her when Hamze was born and she now raises her child alone.
Every week, Hamze and Maryann attend rehabilitation sessions in the orthopedic-fitting center run by HI in the camp.
Maryann is learning to provide her son with the care he needs to protect his health and well-being.
HI has given Hamze a splint to prevent knee joint contractures and a specially adapted wheelchair to support his posture as he moves around.
Since March and the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, HI’s team has also been teaching Maryann how to protect her family from the virus.
She now understands the need to take precautions such as regular handwashing and wearing a face mask in public.
“HI has provided me with information on the steps to take to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 in the camp. It's a deadly disease that can affect anyone,"
She and her parents are extremely poor and depend on humanitarian aid from HI and other NGOs to survive. Before the epidemic, she used to clean her neighbors' houses.
"Unfortunately, my neighbors are also afraid of getting sick, so I can’t work there anymore. I no longer earn an income, and I cannot feed my son and my parents,"
This loss of income only adds to the problems experienced by Maryann. Her son has special needs and she can no longer afford to buy him milk. Food has become expensive in the camp.
Maryann thanks HI for the daily support the organization provides to people with disabilities in the camp, helping them meet their needs in these difficult times.