‘She’s found her voice’: How this Joburg toddler is blossoming despite being born with a rare condition

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Little Amalia was diagnosed with Dandy-Walker Syndrome in 2017. (Photo: SUPPLIED)
Little Amalia was diagnosed with Dandy-Walker Syndrome in 2017. (Photo: SUPPLIED)

It’s just a tiny three-letter word but hearing it means the world to them. Three-year-old Amalia Adams can’t walk, crawl or do anything healthy children her age can do – but recently, she started saying the word “Mom”.

And her proud parents never get tired of hearing her saying it – it’s such a relief because for years Shaaqira Sallie (27) and Taahir Adams (30) from Crosby in Johannesburg wondered if they’d ever hear their child speaking.

Just a few months after her birth in 2017, Amalia was diagnosed with Dandy-Walker syndrome (DWS), a rare congenital malformation of the cerebellum – the part of the brain that controls movement. At age four, she still can’t walk and her parents move her around in a specialised pram.

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