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Lumakanda PWDs benefit from mobility devices

Persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Lugari’s Lumakanda Ward have benefited from an assortment of 100 assistive devices, courtesy of Smile for the Neurodiversity Organisation in Africa.

The organisation’s humanitarian founder, Carol Joseph Emoyo, presented the devices donated through her organisation by Mary Wanganga Partners for care to 100 beneficiaries yesterday during the end of Lumakanda festival season two.

Speaking at Lumakanda grounds, Emoyo said her organisation’s mission is to ensure the PWDs are mobile.

“We want them to be able to move from one place to another. For For instance, when one has a tricycle, he or she is going to be mobile and independent because that person will be able to start a small business like hawking,” she said.

She appealed to PWDS to shun stigma, accept their condition, and love themselves.

“It is a tough journey. Despite the stigma, we have to stand tall to overcome it. Once you live in denial, you are finished. If you don’t accept your situation and love yourself, just know that no one will love you. As a parent living with a child with a disability, you should stop pitying yourself. Being special means that the child has something that the other person lacks,” she counselled.

Emoyo, who is the mother of a child living with severe cerebral palsy, told the PWDS that the mere fact they are considered special is an indicator that they are conquerors and should love themselves first.

She appealed to members of the public to stop stigmatising PWDs as they are special in their own way.

She urged them to embrace PWDs, be their advocates, and ensure zero disability stigmatization.

Lumakanda Ward Representative Bernard Bokanda urged parents not to
fall prey to stigmatisation and hide children born with disabilities at home as they are gifted differently despite their condition and all they need support.

Bokanda, who is the Deputy Majority Leader in the Kakamega County Assembly, promised to present a bill to the Assembly seeking to decentralise the assessment of PWDs from the county headquarters to the sub-county level.

Lugari Sub-County PWD Coordinator Emmanuel Nyongesa lauded the organisation for the donation, saying the devices would save the PWDs from begging.

“If you give us such support, we shall stop begging, as we shall be able to move around and engage in small business activities,” he said, adding, “All we need is capital, and we shall be empowered”.

Metrine Nyongesa, a beneficiary of a walking frame, thanked the ward, representative and the organisation for coming to her rescue, having lost her walking ability two years ago.

She said the mobility devices would now enable them to carry out their daily chores with ease.

Ruth Mutakale, who developed blindness in 2017, urged the representative to create a special fund that would assist the disabled to start businesses and be independent.

Mutakale, who is a third-year student at Machakos Teachers Training College appealed to parents to give their disabled children a chance to go to school.

“Despite my father also being disabled, he never neglected me at home. He has given me a chance to go to school, and soon I will graduate and get a job and be independent despite my condition,” she said.

By Melechezedeck Ejakait

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