How Samson Accessed Life-Saving Surgery, Food, and Counseling
by Sandra Bauer
Posted on October 26, 2022
Beliefs, Child, disability, education, Health, International, marginalized, stigma, vulnerable
Samson was born with cerebral palsy and hydrocephalus, which caused him to have limited speech, mild cognitive delays, breathing challenges, and a short stature. In addition to coping with his physical and intellectual challenges, his family also struggled to earn an income. Samson lived with his parents, four brothers, and two sisters on a small farm, but Kenya’s prolonged drought resulted in poor crops and the family often went hungry. Although his father sought work as a mason, it was difficult for him to find consistent employment.
Accessing Life-Saving Medical Care
Fortunately, Kupenda met Samson’s family when he was still an infant. Our Kenyan staff provided him with a food stipend and referred him to a health facility where he could receive medical care. As a result, doctors were able to perform a lifesaving procedure that drained excess fluid from Samson’s brain when he was just five months old. They also gave him medicine to assist with his breathing difficulties, which allowed him to resume daily activities.
Unleashing Academic and Social Potential
When Samson turned 7 years old, a Kupenda sponsor supported him to attend the Masheheni Hope Academy. Due to the early medical interventions Kupenda had helped him access, he was strong enough to walk to his new school and cognitively healthy enough to attend mainstream classes.
Today, Samson is 9 years old and in second grade. His teachers report that he performs especially well in his classes about hygiene and nutrition as well as arts and crafts. He also helps other students with their mathematics.
Samson is also able to be active, including playing soccer and singing. His mother reports that he is a talented acrobat, which is something he enjoys.
Planning for the Future
As Samson continues to grow, Kupenda’s staff and local leader child advocates will counsel him and his family so they become more knowledgeable about his disabilities and can access additional services they may need. Our staff and trained leaders will also facilitate community advocacy trainings and events to educate others in his village about disabilities and the need to lovingly include and support people of all abilities so they can thrive like Samson.
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