Saturday, December 15, 2007

Cultural belief in Africa about disabilty

In Africa when a baby is born everyone is always happy and ready to accept the kid.
But on the contrary when a baby is born with various disabilities like blindness, deaf, mentally handicapped or physically handicapped that becomes a source of embarrassment and in turn the baby may be hidden.

In Malava part of western province of Kenya which borders Uganda when a baby is born with a physical defect he/she may not be allowed to go to school is they are considered as abnormal.
And to them abnormality comes from a curse, bad omen or witchcraft and consequently it leads to stigmatization of the persons with disabilities.
A few who attend schools may be from very rich families or may be sponsored by organizations.
Among the Bakabras of western province in Kenya when someone dies he is kept in a hole dug in his sitting room then transferred to a grave in front of his house for him or her to be remembered but in the case of a disable they are buried `thrown` in the backyard and their grave is covered with banana leaves for them to be forgotten forever.
This shows complete stigma and neglect in a life time.

In western Kenya boys are always circumcised in a cultural way like going to the bush(seclusion, separation) and where they may need to dance vigorously as they come back home.
But for the disable child it is so difficult: while according to them if the young boy has not gone for the all process he is not considered as a man and therefore not allowed to marry.

In the year 2003 (Kenya) when new president was coming to power (President Kibaki). He promised free primary education for all kids forgeting that the county had disable students and therefore as the parents with regular students were celebrating about free education and how they could save for the high school fee, but on the contrary the parents with disable kids dint have anything to celebrate for, since the special schools are still expensive since the kids may need Braille machines, special teachers and conducive environment where the wheelchairs can move without disturbing the kids.

According to the government giving the disable people support means giving them crutches, wheelchairs and food and forgetting the saying "teach me how to fish but don't give me the fish" they end up not given education .

To some extend government may build institutions for carpentry masonry, hairdressing and tailoring
But I do wonder, cant the disable people be professionals??????????? Like doctors, lawyers and even lectures.

According to Werner in his book THE DISABLE VILLAGE CHILDREN he says `disable persons and families must Begin to work together to look for resources and to reeducate both themselves and community.


manuela said...

This is so true.
But I was wondering do Odinga and Musioka talk about this issue in their electoral campaign? how is the pre election situation?

Anyway, here in Panama' things are similar, sometimes I feel like being in Nairobi.
but I have just found out that the president seems to be very active for disable people because one of his children is disable.
Let's see.

school for the girls said...

Hi Rebecca,
Thats true i was wondering if really this politicians do have disable people in their families lets hope that one day they will consider them.thats good keep it moving.

orietta said...

ciao Rebecca!
non disperarti per la situazione dei bambini inabili nel tuo paese, era così anche in Italia tempo fa, poi piano piano con l'aiuto dei media si è riusciti a sensibilizzare l'opinione pubblica e adesso c'è una maggiore sensibilità per questi problemi.
Tu fai bene a denunciare questo sul tuo Blog, intanto un poco di aiuto te lo mandiamo tramite il tuo c/c bancario.
un abbraccio

manuela said...

Rebecca uko connect?
leo ni miss welby's bash! angalia bloggi yake!

Miss Welby said...

hello Rebecca, just dropping you a line: you've got great friends in Orietta and Manuela!

school for the girls said...

Ciao Orietta
Grazie un grocco per magnifice comment.

school for the girls said...

Ciao Michael
Indeed i have got good and wonderful friends Orietta and Manuela also including you.
Which is a pleasure, THANKS FOR YOUR COMMENT.