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Be patient, seek support – Mother of child living with cerebral palsy encourages others

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Mavis Ayinbotimah, a parent of a child living with cerebral palsy, has encouraged parents and caregivers facing similar challenges to voice their needs and actively seek the necessary support for their children’s improved well-being.

During her conversation with Mark Smith on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show on the occasion of World Cerebral Palsy Day, she emphasized the importance of not succumbing to criticism or shame from others while seeking assistance. She reminded parents not to pay heed to persons who may perceive their children as spirit children and may want to commit them to archaic tradition systems. 

Additionally, Madam Ayinbotimah stressed the need for immense patience among parents and caregivers when caring for children with such conditions.

“Parents have to be extremely patient. It takes patience to take care of children with such conditions. Sometimes, within the family you are living in, these concerns that these children are spirit children would come. As parents, we should be able to stand on our feet and fight for our children. My husaband and I, we faced it. My husband and I decided that we would not even that place [spirit homes], talkless of testing to see if our child was a spirit child or not.”

Madam Ayinbotimah called on fathers to give unwavering support to their wives in the care of children with cerebral palsy. 

“The fathers must support and encourage their wives. My husband has been a very supportive man. I was having a baby when we met AfriKids. Anytime there’s a training, it is my husband who will back this child and ride a motorbike to Bongo and partake in the physio-therapy. I don’t know how many men here, in the Upper East Region, would do that,” she said. 

Meanwhile, AfriKids, a child rights organisation headquartered in the Upper East Region, is calling for support from well-meaning organisations and individuals to help expand care for persons, particularly children, living with cerebral palsy.

When care for children living with such conditions expands beyond the four centres in the Upper East Region run by AfriKids, it will gain national attention and, as such, be guided by national policies. This is according to Raymond Ayinne, External Affairs Manager for AfriKids. 

On October 6, the world unites to observe World Cerebral Palsy Day, an occasion to honour the lives and accomplishments of the over 17 million people worldwide affected by this condition. Cerebral Palsy is a group of disorders impacting movement and posture. The condition deserves recognition not only for its prevalence but also for the resilience and achievements of those living with it.

Cerebral Palsy stems from brain damage before or during birth, affecting movement, muscle coordination, and balance in individuals. World Cerebral Palsy Day provides an opportunity and a platform to understand the impact of this often-misunderstood condition. Children and adults affected by cerebral palsy often face challenges that hinder their full participation in society. World CP Day sheds light on the need for increased awareness, understanding, and support for those with cerebral palsy.

This year’s theme for World Cerebral Palsy Day, “A world that’s made for everyone,” underscores the critical importance of accessibility and inclusion for individuals with cerebral palsy. The focus extends beyond mere rhetoric to a commitment by stakeholders to creating a world where everyone, regardless of ability, can actively engage in all facets of society.

Cerebral Palsy stems from damage to the developing brain before or during birth, affecting movement, muscle coordination, and balance. While there is no cure for it, treatments exist to improve symptoms. Notably, cerebral palsy stands as the most common motor disability in children, impacting over 17 million people globally.

World Cerebral Palsy Day is a call to action for a more inclusive world. Understanding the condition, supporting those affected, and advocating for their rights are important steps toward building a society where everyone, regardless of ability, can thrive.

Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana

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