Disabled kids need love and care

2018-06-07 06:02
Nonkolontsi Tshaka shared the story of her disabled child.PHOTO: unathi obose

Nonkolontsi Tshaka shared the story of her disabled child.PHOTO: unathi obose

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Members of Bamkelwe Support Group in Mfuleni held a child protection awareness event for disabled children in an effort to encourage community support.

The event, which was held at Zolile Malindi Centre, was organised by Afrika Tikkun, under whose auspices Bamkelwe Support Group falls.

Xoliswa Vondo, a case administrater at Bamkelwe, described the day as an annual event to empower children who are living with disabilities.

“Disabled children are the worst victims in the community because they can’t fight or speak for themselves.

People tend to take advantage of them by not giving [them] the respect they deserve.

“In this support group, and as parents, we share our stories and find ways to support each other. We also show the disabled children love,” said Vondo.

She added that some parents even locked their disabled children inside the house the whole day before they leave for work.

Vondo said the support group was founded specifically for mothers of disabled children­.

“I have a child with a disability ... who became sick when she turned a year old and was declared an epileptic.
Since then, her right hand side became dysfunctional. I struggled emotionally to accept her as my child after she became disabled ... But accepted her fate when we established Bamkelwe in 2016, with other women who were facing similar challenges­.

I also prayed and asked God to change my heart to love and accept my child,” she said of her 14-year-old daughter.

Nonkosi Mayisela (59) urged parents to adore their children.

“Our children are facing challenges of discrimination, are neglected or disowned by their families and community. We must love them like any other children and accept them the way they are,” said Mayisela.

She says the discrimination begins at home when parents treat their children differently to others.

Afrika Tikkun marketing coordinator Shirley Tshwale described the event as an extension of last week’s Child Protection Week to empower the children.

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