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July 2015 report
We’ve just made another quarterly transfer of money for Acheru. As well as the budget to cover running costs there were a number of other payments towards building work or equipment, but we will soon be able to regard ‘development’ as complete, and use all our resources for running costs. This should simplify our administrative work here, and I hope make things more straightforward at Acheru. Over the years our work has been wide ranging but in future we will be concentrating exclusively on Acheru. It is already much bigger than we had ever envisaged and we want to ensure that we provide the support they need to run the unit effectively and maintain high standards.
Although we want to focus on Acheru, we receive other requests for help. Some may be unrealistic, and easy to turn down, but others are harder to ignore. One request is on behalf of a teenage girl who had lost a leg in an accident some years ago. She attends secondary school, and is badly affected by her lack of mobility so needs an artificial leg. We think her parents could probably afford this, but they won’t help, so what should we do? If we simply say it’s her parents responsibility, nothing will be done and the girl will suffer, so we have agreed to pay.
Another plea for help is for a young girl who badly needs genital surgery. This doesn’t come close to meeting our criteria for Acheru, but no one else seems willing to help so we have agreed to pay the hospital fees.
We try to keep an open mind about such cases, it’s difficult to be too restrictive and leave children to suffer. It raises a serious concern though about how restrictive some agencies can be, and the times we have had to intervene when really someone else should have taken responsibility.
Now to a more ‘typical’ Acheru patient. Samuel, 14 years old, was brought to Acheru in February this year following a community outreach. He had severely restricted mobility due to his deformed feet. “The feet could get blisters and wounds, no shoes would fit me because my feet were folded behind. I lost hope of going to school because of pain and children laughing at me.” Samuel suffered emotionally too, his family broken and badly affected by having a disabled child. “All the time I pray to the Almighty God that my family can get united once again and rejoice with the happiness of my healing as a complete family. I want to thank all the people who have put in all their efforts to give me a new life. God bless you all.”

Samuel before and after surgery

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