Let's fly - We did it

Quality care for six disabled children in Kenya
July 28, 2021
Sr Deborah Mallot
We did it

This beautiful project consisted of contributing to the costs of the Kisima programme for children with disabilities in Kenya.

The aim was to subsidise the costs of education, nutritional assistance, medical support and transport for 6 disabled children for one year.

As the programme operates according to the national school calendar, this beautiful project had to be postponed due to the school closure imposed by the Ministry of Education until 4 January 2021 as a result of the pandemic.

During the closure, the centre continued to pay staff who worked hard on plans to reopen, develop the curriculum and implement the preventive measures necessary for the health situation.

Sister Deborah says:

During the pandemic period, we continued to support the costs of nutrition by providing food parcels to the families of the students in Kisima. The children also continued to receive physiotherapy at home and had some other related medical care. Fortunately, none of the children contracted COVID-19.

Fidelis, with cerebral palsy and epilepsy, needed anti-seizure medication. She was not covered by the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) and her mother was unable to pay for the necessary medication. At the Kisima Centre, the physiotherapy she was receiving began to take effect and we decided that it was important that her therapist continued to visit her even when the centre was closed. We also referred her to a partner so that her family could have access to subsidised medication to control her seizures.

Joseph with intellectual disabilities arrived at Kisima in January 2020. He cried constantly during the first weeks of his stay, having never been separated from his parents. When the pandemic forced Kisima to close its doors, our physiotherapist went to train his parents to care for their son between visits. Joseph has learned to walk, he can now use the toilet and his speech has developed well. During the last home visit we made, Joseph saw the school bus driver and wanted to come back with us that day! We were very pleased to see that Joseph's father had created a vegetable garden, which gives the family greater food security (both in terms of quantity and nutritional quality).

Six children and their families benefit directly from this project. The 51 other children in the Kisima programme also benefit as the project helps to pay for the teachers' salaries and the transport van.

I would like to express my gratitude to donors who have contributed in any way to Project Rosalie's fundraising for the Kisima classes for children and youth with intellectual and physical disabilities.

Donors like you make all the difference!

You enable the Daughters of Charity to provide access to education for children and young people with muscular dystrophy, Down's syndrome, cerebral palsy, spina bifida and a wide range of other physical and intellectual disabilities.

 

 

 

Kisima is a unique programme in that it accepts children with very severe disabilities. For the most severely disabled children, Kisima staff provide comfort care and nutritional support in a cheerful and supportive environment. All children who need physiotherapy receive it free of charge. Many of them arrived at the Centre unable to walk and are now walking after several months of rehabilitation.

During the Covid-19 lockdown, we tried to support the families by delivering food twice to each family and making regular phone calls to keep in touch. Our teachers sent home assignments to their students and the physiotherapist made home visits to some of the young people who had just started walking.

Some arrive and are unable to sit or feed themselves and similarly, after months of patient work, finally do. For those children who can acquire academic skills, our staff work with the Kenyan school curriculum to help them make as much progress as possible.

 

 

 

Some of the older young people are learning baking or gardening. In the future we hope to have a member of staff responsible for finding jobs in the surrounding villages for young people who are able to have a small business. We are also currently building a greenhouse which will enable our young adults with disabilities to improve their agricultural skills. The Daughters of Charity also help families to create gardens and small vegetable plots in their homes. Some of our young adults with disabilities are raising dairy goats and others are making jewellery or learning to weave rugs.

The Daughters of Charity staff do their best to assess the interests and abilities of the children and young people in our programme and then we strive to help them build those skills and abilities. At Daughters of Charity Thigio Services, we believe strongly in the dignity and worth of all people and work every day to ensure that the wider civic community recognises the incredible gift that these children represent. Thank you for helping us reach out to individuals and families in need.

Once again, THANK YOU for helping the Daughters of Charity make this project possible.