‘’The first thing I did when I got this chair, was to go visit my grandmother’’ Noella joyfully says.
6-year-old Noella was born with twisted legs towards the back and could not walk. Health facilities in the nearby couldn’t help. Her disability was too complicated for health facility to help; she was born with a tumor in her back that caused her legs to be paralyzed; her mother explains.
Noella’s family decided to bring their child back home, to keep her as she was born; Noella’s mother continues.
Noella lives in Nyamata Sector, South Eastern of Rwandawith her mother and her 9-year-old sister Blandine. Her disability forced her to stay at home, isolated.
Her mother couldn’t figure out how her child would go to school when she reaches school going age.
Attending school for Noella, had two advantages, her mother explains.
Her daughter would be preparing for a brighter future but also her mother would be securing time to fend for the family, as Noella would be cared for at school.
It was a real burden for the family as Noella’s mother spent a lot of time taking care of her daughter. Fending for the family became difficult.
She would tie her on the back as she went to till the land and Noella would cry lying down nearby her mother’s place of work; her mother still recalls.
When Noella turned five, her mother decided to bring her to school but it was a real challenge for Noella to attend, without a mean of transport. The family could not afford buying a wheelchair for her to use.
Noella was carried on the back and seated on the bench of school by her mother. During break times, Noella had to crawl on the ground and was helped by Blandine, her sister, to sit back on the school bench. Her mother was really sad about this situation since she could not afford to buy an appropriate wheelchair for her daughter; Noella’s mother recounts.
After a long period of seeking help through different organizations, Noella and her family finally received good news that WV would be offering a wheelchair. Noella’s mother says the wheelchair has improved the situation as it helps her daughter to go to school but also to move around their home without the help of others.
“Now she is more autonomous, she can go outside and play with other children or go to school without me being present” Noella’s mother rejoices.
Life has positively changed for Noella; in addition to being able to attend school, she is no longer obliged to be confined at home as it was the case before she received her blue wheelchair.
“Now I can go and visit my grandmother as often as I want, I can also go to church with my sister” says Noella.
Noella can move around supported by her older sister Blandine, her mother can easily go to the field to till the land with tranquility of heart because she knows that her daughter will have less troubles in pursuing her education, moving around while back home as long as her older sister is there to support; support that requires now little effort, her mother says smiling thanking Donors who gave them a chair that brought many opportunities for the family.
Since 2014, WV has provided 119 wheelchairs to beneficiaries living with disabilities in Nyamata Sector. Disabled children like Noella are now able to pursue their education and live a happy life as any normal child.