Disabilities in family inspire teen

2017-11-07 06:00
Malikah Hamza

Malikah Hamza

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Her family members’ disabilities inspired a local teenager to raise funds to support autistic children.

Proceeds from the fundraising efforts of Malikah Hamza (13) from Kensington will be donated to the Nosh for Josh Foundation’s autism campaign to raise awareness of and help children living with autism spectrum disorder.

Malikah is raising funds through an online Backabuddy crowdfunding page.

She says having a close relationship with her two cousins who are living with disabilities but leading normal lives made her understand that everyone was capable of breaking a stereotype if given the chance, and of being the best they could be.

Malikah says: “Giving back is beneficial, not only for the recipients but for the person giving. Nothing gives me greater joy than seeing that I can make a difference, even if I can contribute in a small way. I want to encourage others to do so too. Live the difference you want to see in the world. To people living with autism my motto is ‘Live your dream’. Take active steps to realising them and be the best you can be.”

The foundation’s management has praised Malikah for her generosity.

Gabriela Rishka Wiener, one of the campaign organisers, says: “Malikah came on board seeing the opportunity to help those living with autism and be a voice for those who do not have one. Her greatest strength is her humbleness, and with her qualities as a team player and an ambitious and loyal being, she has a great desire to use her expertise and passion for sports to encourage youth to see that autistic children are no different. It is their brain that has been damaged and can be healed. She wants the world to know that she supports autism.”

Malikah is a promising South African hockey player. She scooped a professional sponsorship contract with a sport clothing store when she was nine years old. According to Wiener, Malikah has been recognised as one of the best hockey players in the world in her age group. “Malikah just recently became the only women’s cricketer worldwide to receive a sponsorship deal from international cricket brand Slazenger.”V For more information visit www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/magic-malikah-for-noshforjosh.

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