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Helping the disabled 

 
There is little help available for the high numbers of disabled children in rural areas of Zambia. So what is Project Luangwa doing about it? 
 
 
Touch Therapy Centre
Last year Nathalie Zanoli, who owns and runs The Bush-Spa (a local Spa located inside the National Park), approached Project Luangwa for support with a small project helping some of the many disabled children in the immediate area. Her trained spa staff would work with her giving massage therapy and passive range of motion exercises to disabled children as well as support to the mothers who can often become isolated after having a disabled child. However Nathalie and her staff also had a business to run and needed to concentrate on what they were good at rather than admin and funding.  PL was keen to help and so a perfect partnership was born.
 

The activities take place in a small rented building close to the local clinic and has their support and approval. The nearest and only physiotherapist (based over 60 km away and who has to cover a huge area) also gives his support and makes visits when he can.   Before any work is done with the children they are requested to visit the local clinic for assessment and referral.

 

At the centre mothers can support each other and learn how to help their children themselves. Children receive gentle massage therapy and are encouraged to play with stimulating toys. It has become a big hit with the local kids who love to come and help ansd they are invaluable in making the new disabled children feel welcome and more comfortable in a new environment.  Fwilane Banda, PL's qualified social worker, regularly attends sessions in order to councel the mothers. 

However the building where Nathalie and her team work with the mothers and children is run down and needs a bit of a facelift – it used to be a shop and had previously been left unused for some time. Plans are in place for this and Nathalie is busy raising funds. She already has a few toys, mats and so on but there is always a need for more as well as other bits and pieces. If you’d like to help please get in touch at karen@projectluangwa.org and you can find out more about this project here.

 

Supplying wheelchairs  - click here to see the children who have received a wheelchair through PL

 

Sponsoring a blind or deaf child to attend special school  - There are large numbers of deaf children in the area and this may be due to treating babies and young children with quinine for malaria. thank fully there are fewer children who are disabled through sight impairtment. Luckily there are two special schools in nearby Chipata, a town about 120 km away; one for the deaf and one for the blind. Classes are small and children must board but the school achieves excellent results. As the vast majority of parents are unable to afford the fees we arrange sponsorship for these children. If you are interested in helping please contact us. 

 

 
 
       
               
 

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