Malawi Red Cross rescues disabled children in Chikwawa

Over 300 children with various forms of disabilities in Chikwawa can breathe a sigh of relief after Malawi Red Cross Society came to their aid with different interventions.

All smiles Eliza Tomasi and her mother with Red Cross officials.-Photo by Steven Chirombo

Malawi Red Cross in Chikwawa is implementing a 4 year resilient project with support from Danish, Finish, Islandic and Italic Red Cross Societies covering areas of Water and Sanitation, Community Health and Disaster Risk Reduction.

According to Chikwawa Red Cross Project Officer, Cecilia Banda, their project aims at influencing duty bearers to act towards the best interest of the right holders including children with disability who currently have been identified and screened from some schools and communities around Traditional Authority (TA) Chapananga.

“Through this program, as Malawi Red Cross, we want to assist marginalized groups. As for disabled children, we identified Malawi Council for the Handicapped (MACOHA) at district level which we supported and managed to identify a lot of children, around 300, who were registered and grouped depending on their needs,” she said.

According to Banda, the children were referred to facilities across the country to such as Chikwawa District Health Office, Beit Cure and Malawi Against Physical Disability (MAP) to be assisted.

One of the beneficiaries, Eliza Tomasi, 14, from Chingetimani Village in TA Chapananga area who suffers from epilepsy received a wheelchair through the project.

MACOHA District Assistant Rehabilitation Officer for Chikwawa, Elizabeth Khumbanyiwa commended Malawi Red Cross for the kind gesture saying the development has seen a lot of disabled children in the district also accessing medical services.

She said from the sample of 300 children that were identified, most had the problem of hearing impairment whilst others were physically challenged.

She called on more stakeholders to come to rescue of the children saying the sample of 300 children indicates that the district has more disabled children.

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