Egide Inezayimana is 7 years old and lives in the Huye district of southern Rwanda. He is in third grade at his local primary school. Egide was born with a visual disability, causing vision loss in his right eye and complete blindness in his left eye. In March 2023, HI came to his aid. He now has new glasses and can follow along in class.
A painful situation
As Egide is from a very modest family, his parents couldn’t afford the medical treatment he needed. The first six years of his life were a series of obstacles. His mother explains:
“In the day, the sunlight hurt Egide’s eyes and at night, he couldn't see objects or distances and couldn't move from one place to another. He regularly suffered from sudden violent, headaches. His right eye also developed a serious eye infection, which was very painful. In class, he couldn't follow or learn properly because he couldn't see what was written on the blackboard or in the books. Most of the time, he missed class... He was in danger of dropping out.”
Personalized support changed everything
Like other children with disabilities, Egide was identified in March 2023 by one of the local education mobilizers recruited and trained by HI.
"After the assessment carried out by the specialists with HI's support, my son was admitted to Kabgayi Eye Hospital, much to our delight. He was diagnosed, operated on and given glasses that now help him get around and go to school," says his mother, happily.
Egide can now see well out of his right eye and he no longer has fluid in his eyes or headaches. Since he returned to school, he has never missed a day and is making good grades. His classmates no longer make fun of him, and he is fully integrated into all the school’s activities.
The EXACTE project began in 2018. Funded by UNICEF, it makes education inclusive and accessible to all, notably through teacher training and adapting the school environment to make it more physically accessible. Nearly 15,000 teachers have been trained, more than 1,200 schools supported and 416 regional education managers have benefited from awareness raising.