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Light at the end of the tunnel for exhausted mom of two disabled children

By Faeza
18 May 2016

Life is looking much better for Nomahlubi Mbulu, a mother of three with two disabled children who felt incapable of taking care of their special needs.

Generous readers have dug deep since she told her story, resulting in donations totalling R13 000.

Mbulu, from Crossroads in Cape Town, last week told News24 she can no longer take care of her youngest child, and felt she had no option but to give her up.

She has a 13-year-old daughter who has autism and epilepsy, a 17-year-old daughter who has no disabilities and a 21-year-old son who has cerebral palsy and epilepsy.

Soon after giving birth to her second child, Mbulu realised she could not take care of more children, and had a tubal ligation (sterilisation), but she still fell pregnant again.

The only relief she gets is for two weeks each year when her daughter is admitted to Lentegeur Hospital. This time Mbulu had told doctors she did not want her daughter back.

Relieved and grateful

But after speaking candidly about the hardship she faces, assistance has been streaming in for the exhausted mom.

Among the donors is a West Coast businessman, who asked not to be named.

He has committed to paying her R2 000 a month, and has already deposited the first donation.

"No-one deserves to live like this. It is not right for someone to say that they would rather die than deal with these hardships," he said on Tuesday.

Mbulu said she was relieved and grateful for the help.

She is drowning in debt and pays the local money lenders – who charge 50% interest – R2 000 a month. She has to pay these instalments until December.

She receives R3 300 each month in government grants to take care of her and her children, but she said the money is simply not enough to tend to their needs and put food on the table.

Finding a job

The Mbulu home was also not in a good state. Their roof and walls had holes in them and exposure to the elements made them ill. They also sleep on broken mattresses.

But Mbulu has started using the donations to fix their home to make it more comfortable for her children.

Her daughter is still at Lentegeur, she confirmed, but Mbulu planned to visit her again on Wednesday.

"I am going to find a school for her where she can learn and be safe. I want to make sure she is okay," she said.

Another reader has made an offer to pay her teenage daughter's school fees, and Mbulu has gratefully accepted.

Mbulu said besides her children’s wellbeing, her next priority is finding a job.

"I am trying to find someone to look after my children so that I can get work and be able to look after them myself. I will take anything – from domestic worker to office cleaning," she said.

"Life is expensive. I want to look after them myself but I need help."

How you can help:

• Make a donation into Mbulu's personal account: Capitec, 1181135298

• Drop off clothing at the GroundUp office on any weekday (9:00 to 16:00) between now and Wednesday 18 May. Please make sure clothing is in at least a packet and clean. They will take the donated clothes to her on Thursday 19 May. The address is Suite 08SB, 1st floor, South Block, Tannery Park, 21 Belmont Road, Rondebosch, Cape Town 7700.

Source: News24