Monday, March 9, 2015

Albino in Tanzania

The first incidence: A child is playing outside their home in his home village and out of no where a group of unknown people rush towards him and chop off his arm...... Second incidence: A woman who married to a man for several years is sold out by her husband meaning... the woman will be chopped off alive and her body parts will be used for witchcraft purposes. This has been the plight of people living with albinism in Tanzania.

Despite the fact that albinism is a congenital defect that is characterized by lack of skin pigmentation: People with albinism in some parts of Tanzania have encountered death while the lucky have been forced to live with permanent disabilities following barbaric belief their body parts (when used for witchcraft) will result to prosperity.

Over the past few weeks these incidences have instilled fear, lack of freedom and sense of belonging among people with albinism. The shocking bit is that very little is being done by the leaders to protect the very basic rights of their citizens.

Diversity is meant to bring about unity..... but this fact has failed to sink in human beings' hearts and mind!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

What is Ebola?

In the past few months the world has been shaken by news of Ebola virus mainly affecting the Western countries of Africa. What exactly is Ebola? Ebola is an infectious and generally fatal disease marked by fever and severe internal bleeding, spread through contact with infected body fluids by a filovirus ( Ebola virus), whose normal host species is unknown.

 As the world trying to combat the virus by research on vaccines and the management of the pandemic the root cause of the disease remains unknown. There are controversial writings on the matter some organizations believe the virus is man made while scientific research from WHO says that the main transmitters are wild animals. Despite the fact the root cause is unknown, I remain optimistic that the world will be in solidarity with the affected people. 

Africa is a big continent of 30.2 million square kilometer square, in comparison to the whole land very few regions have been affected. Instead of global stigma let us fight this disease with sufficient knowledge and granting affected people their dignity as human beings!


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Male or Female (Intersex): Where do I belong?

What is Intersex?  “Intersex” is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male. For example, a person might be born appearing to be female on the outside, but having mostly male-typical anatomy on the inside. Or a person may be born with genitals that seem to be in-between the usual male and female types—for example, a girl may be born with a noticeably large clitoris, or lacking a vaginal opening, or a boy may be born with a notably small penis, or with a scrotum that is divided so that it has formed more like labia. Or a person may be born with mosaic genetics, so that some of her cells have XX chromosomes and some of them have XY.
Intersex is an issue that most of our community members have been silent about but as days go by it is a factor that has become more evident. In most parts of the world there is no change for integration for people who have both sexes there putting them on the margin of our society.  In most global system; for instance legal system, when applying for passport, when joining schools and when doing other activities of daily living the system has placed barriers not acknowledging the existence of this minority group and or being insensitive to them.

Aren't they part of us?

Just as a food of thought where do we want them to belong? 

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Disability Mainstreaming in Fashion Industry

The 16 year old Elinor Idarson is among the special people that I have met. She is a super model who does wheel chair cat walk. Having physical disability in our contemporary society has locked out people with disability but I am proud that Elinor can remind the world that there is beauty in life and beauty in all our imperfections! Therefore, the barriers and people's mind set to the matter should change
"Ellinor think Funki models are a great way to include people with disabilities in the fashion industry. Besides, it is not very good in the media, she says. Disabled persons can hardly be seen at all in newspapers, radio and television. - If a little girl sitting in a wheelchair sees a wheelchair user model in a magazine, she gets someone to look up to. I have myself been missing." Elinor Idarson

Proud of you Elinor!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Kajiado girls stand up against FGM

This is very encouraging, as a Christmas gift to their community Masai girls stand up against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM): Female circumcision. This is a cultural practice that is still used in some parts of Kenya.... For a long time this practice has enhanced lack of education, child marriage, health complications and some times death among many African girls. Kudos to Kajiado girls for standing for their rights.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Danny Lamb

Good morning friends, Danny Lamb is an incredible international singer and ambassador for spina bifida and hydrocephalus globally. He is doing so much in promoting inclusion of persons SB, HC and other disabilities. He has done a song 'finding our way' in order to be a voice of other thousands of people with spina bifida and hydrocephalus globally. He is a gift to us especially that we are going to celebrated our 1st world spina bifida and hydrocephalus day on 25th of October. if you feel inclined to support the spina and hydrocephalus world... watch this video and vote for him. Voting is valid until 31st October ;-)

we will appreciate for the support :-)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Man, 128, too old for NHIF computers

Mzee Julius Wanyondu Gatonga, 128, cannot be covered by NHIF since the computer system recognises age from 1890, six years after he was born. He is deemed too old for the system, since his ID indicates he was born in 1884; the computers only accept birth dates from 1890. For this reason, efforts by his family to have him covered under the NHIF hit a snag; his age is beyond the NHIF computer system, so his application to be a member was rejected due to his age. Efforts to get help from the Nyeri NHIF Branch manager have hit a snag as he says he does not understand the error. Full article...

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Simplest Things

The Simplest Things by Danny Lamb featuring Rebecca Alitsi, the rock star accompanying on the guitar a Rebecca in great shape on her occasion to visit Sweden in order to receive a deserved recognition for her work on young women's education in Africa. Gongrats Reb!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Why Should we Prevent those we Love

Being in Stockholm Sweden for one week was a fabulous week full of knowledge organized by the International Federation for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus. It was a chance to learn more about spina bifida and hydrocephalus.

Most countries have always opted on therapeutic abortion for unborn children who have spina bifida and hydrocephalus. This has been looked from the point of preventing them from existing!

But the most touching presentation was "Why should we prevent those we love" meaning why should we terminate or abort children who have different deformities?

This brought about the sense of protecting and respecting every one's life despite their challenges. It was an inspiring talk!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Conference in Sweden

Spina bifida and Hydrocephalus remain to be part of many existing developmental disabilities in the world today. every year more that 1500 children are born with the condition. Without social and medical support many children with these disabilities end up dying at a tender age. However with social and medical support most of them have grown up to bit many odds and they have managed to live their live just like other people who do not have the disability.
I have been invited by  the International Federations for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus in Stockholm Sweden to learn skills about the care of individuals who experience this challenge. This will be a good experience and it will help me in helping more individuals with and without the condition.

Friday, April 27, 2012

My Africa, by Elena Galimberti

Hi Reb, last week in Milan an artist friend of mine was exhibiting her paintings and when I saw this one I immediately thought of you. She gave me permission to post it in our blogs. Hope you're fine!

Elena Galimberti (aka Poison) was born and works in Milan. More or less self-taught, she occasionaly attended various courses just in order to learn the basics of several pictorial and artistic techniques in order to use them as she likes: painting on fabric and ceramics; sculptures, wood-carving, and live figures. Always looking for something different and original.

This work is part of her Silhouettes' plan: telling history within history. Here we have the shape of Africa inside (inside only) which the painting develops. The technique is a mix of carved or pokerworked wood. In this case pyrography is the technique of decorating wood by burning a design with a heated metallic point, thus leaving a mark delineating the contours of the figures, all completed with sands, plasters and oil colours.

Leggi questo in italiano su Miss Welby

Monday, April 16, 2012

Italian Lesson with Francesco Guccini

Hi Reb, enjoy not just the great music but the lyrics as well - this is pure Poetry by Francesco Guccini, dedicated to you. Hope that you and the girls are fine.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Mrs. Johnston - The Simple Things [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

An inspiring artist with hydrocephalus. this is awesome!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Mysterious nodding syndrome spreading through Uganda

Large areas of northern Uganda are experiencing an outbreak of nodding syndrome, a mysterious disease that causes young children and adolescents to nod violently when they eat food. The disease, which may be an unusual form of epilepsy, could be linked to the parasitic worm responsible for river blindness, a condition that affects some 18 million people, most of them in Africa. The current outbreaks are concentrated in the districts of Kitgum, Pader and Gulu. In Pader alone, 66 children and teenagers have died. More than 1000 cases were diagnosed between August and mid-December. Onchocerca volvulus, a nematode worm that causes river blindness, is known to infest all three affected districts. Nearly all the children with nodding syndrome are thought to live near permanent rivers, another hint of a connection with river blindness. The link is not clear cut, though. "We know that [Onchocerca volvulus] is involved in some way, but it is a little puzzling because [the worm] is fairly common in areas that do not have nodding disease," says Scott Dowell, who researches paediatric infectious diseases and is lead investigator into nodding syndrome with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There is no known cure for nodding syndrome, so Uganda's Ministry of Health has begun using anticonvulsants such as sodium valproate to treat its signs and symptoms. Meanwhile the disease is continuing to spread, say Janet Oola, Pader's health officer, and Sam William Oyet, the district's medical entomology officer. It has now reached the Ugandan district of Yumbe, which borders the Republic of South Sudan – and cases have also been reported in the southern region of the world's newest country. Since gaining independence from the rest of Sudan in July, South Sudan has remained on track to eradicate one of humanity's oldest diseases – guinea worm. It is unclear, though, whether foreign aid for the new country could help prevent the spread of nodding syndrome... New Scientist