Have you ever broken a bone? If not, the chances are you know someone who has.
In Europe or the USA, breaking a bone is painful and uncomfortable for a while, but it’s normally healed within a few months and forgotten about. They’re certainly not very often life-threatening injuries.
But imagine having fractured your leg at two and leaving it untreated for four years. You’re now six - your leg has caused you agony, it hasn’t grown properly and you can’t play with your friends because you’re in too much pain.
It’s hard to imagine… but this occurs all the time in African communities. We have seen children that have been left untreated for years, not because their family don’t care but because their family can’t do anything!
Low-income countries lack affordable, quality health care. This, as well as the fact that many families live in poverty, means that children with treatable conditions (such as limb fractures, wounds or infections) are commonly left without any treatment at all. This leads to children living with life-limiting deformities, chronic pain and serious infections.
Although we are not a medical charity, we can’t and won’t ignore the fact that children in the communities we work in are ‘disabled’ solely because they have such old injuries and infections which have been left untreated. They need urgent attention before they can attend school, or even have a more normal childhood. That’s why we support over 60 children through our Medical Support Programme. Happily, we are able to offer medical care, including physiotherapy, for all children registered with us at no cost to the families.
We don’t want children’s lives ruined when something can be done to improve their condition. We want all children to live without the pain, isolation and exclusion which results from their impairments.
£25 is all it costs to provide a course of five physiotherapy sessions to a child. It's an isolated world for the child who is left untreated.
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