Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Capture children with cerebral palsy in disability register - Project

Some mothers of children with cerebral palsy have been able to register their children in an on-going registration exercise for all persons with disability.

Mrs Ellen Affam-Dadzie, Head of the With God Cerebral Palsy Centre, an Inclusive education centre for children said for the first time she has been able to register the children at her centre with the LEKMA district assembly.

She therefore urged other mothers of children with cerebral palsy to liaise with the Social Welfare Officer at the various district to also put the names of their children with cerebral palsy in the register of persons with disability.

“Usually children with cerebral palsy are excluded even from the disability fraternity due to their peculiar challenges, they may not be speaking nor walking, so it is left with the parents to become their number one advocate,” she said.

The National Council for Persons with Disability is embarking on a registration exercise to capture the data of all persons with disability.

The exercise will also inform the disbursement of the three per cent District Assemblies Common fund for Persons with Disabilities in Ghana

Ms Esther Sackey, a mother of a child with cerebral palsy in an interview said she hopes her child with also be captured in the data collection and subsequently benefit from the fund, saying, usually, they do not capture children with cerebral palsy even though they also have disabilities and their condition comes with a huge financial burden on  family.

She called on the Social Welfare workers in the various district to help capture all children and adults with cerebral palsy who may be brought by their parents for the registration.

Mr. Kwamena Dadzie-Dennis, Ag. Executive Secretary of the National Council for persons with Disability, said children with cerebral palsy should not be left out in the exercise.

He urged the Social Welfare Officers at the Various Districts to be extra helpful  to parents of children with cerebral palsy, “help them to register their children,” he emphasized.

Mrs Hannah Awadzi, Initiator of the Special Mothers Project, an advocacy and awareness creation platform on cerebral palsy issues, said usually parents do not even have access to such important information.

“Only a negligible percentage of children with cerebral palsy benefit from the fund for persons with disabilities, yet parents make huge sacrifices to even keep the children alive”

“We have issues with the educational system so most of the children are not in school, the lack of support and services including care-giver services is also huge,” she added

Mrs Awadzi urged government to pay attention to children with cerebral palsy and help formulate policies that will help enhance the lives of the children

Monday, September 4, 2017

Mothers of Children with CP trained to make APT Chairs

Some Mothers of children with cerebral palsy at the With God Cerebral Palsy centre have undergone training in how to make Appropriate Paper Technology (APT) chairs.
 Appropriate Paper-based Technology (APbT or APT) is a cost-effective way to produce personally designed furniture or other objects for use and creativity. Materials are recycled: waste paper, thin card and corrugated cardboard boxes.

The Mothers were also learnt how to make parazone, at a two day workshop meant to empower the mothers to venture into micro enterprises

The workshop organized by the With God Cerebral Palsy Ghana with support from the Special Mothers Project used the expertise of mothers who have been trained in the APT to pass on knowledge to other mothers

Ms. Patience Puplampu, Coordinator of the Special Mothers Project and lead trainer for the workshop, said she has the privilege of being trained by the Presbyterian Health Service’s Inclusive Child Development Programme and she is eager to pass on knowledge to other mums.

Ms. Puplampu, a Technical Drawing teacher by profession and a mother of a Nine year old girl with cerebral palsy was particular about getting accurate measurement of the children who will use the APT chairs for maximum benefit.

The APT serves as assistive devices for children with cerebral palsy, devices such as prone boards, walking frames, calipers, hand braces, special chairs/tables, canes, toys and other home gadgets are made for the children.

Ms. Puplampu urged the mothers to work in teams to ensure effectiveness
Mrs. Hannah Awadzi, Initiator of the Special Mothers Project, advised the mothers to take the training serious and be committed to work with their children given the limited number of professionals that handles children with cerebral palsy in the country.

She also encouraged the mothers to be united and support each other whichever way possible, saying, “Ask yourself what can I do to help improve the life of my child with cerebral palsy and the lives of others around me.”

Mrs. Awadzi said “Let us not always expect people to give us gifts, money and other items because of our children, let us also make our mind to contribute meaningfully to the development of this country and our children by joining the campaign for inclusion.”
Mrs. Ellen Affam-Dadzie, Head of the With God Cerebral Palsy Ghana, an inclusive educational centre where mostly children with cerebral palsy are admitted and cared for, said the centre was working to provide mothers of children with cerebral palsy with alternative livelihood.

“Many of the mothers are forced out of job or are sacked at work because they are no longer able to be effective at work,” she said the centre is training mothers in handicrafts, soap making, tye and dye or batik and help set them up in small businesses to enable them earn an income.

Mrs. Affam-Dadzie called on corporate Ghana to support the centre in whatever way possible to help empower mothers of children with cerebral palsy and enhance the lives of children with cerebral palsy.