Sense International has been working with Shifra, now six, since she was three when she was identified by a community worker. She was born profoundly deaf and with cataracts which meant she had little vision.
She had also been abandoned by her mother and taken out of the care of her father, because of his alcohol problems.
Shifra lives with her aunt, uncle and two cousins. The family depends on the sales of the food crops after harvest, with her aunt working as a subsistence farmer. Now supported by Sense International, she attends St Mark VII School for the deaf and deafblind in Bwanda and has learnt many skills, including Ugandan Sign Language and basic reading.
In April 2014, Shifra underwent a successful cataract operation for both eyes at the Ruharo Eye Hospital. The operation was facilitated by Sense International and since then, Shifra has used her vision to develop in many ways. She can concentrate more on classroom activities and is able to enjoy drawing and sorting beads according to colour.
Shifra’s auntie Namukwaya Margret, says:
“It was Sense International through the school in Bwanda, who facilitated the surgery of the cataracts and she began to perceive light. Sense International facilitated her education at Bwanda and she has acquired a lot of skills including communication.
“She is a normal child who does her activities in a unique way. One needs to be trained in order to understand how she communicates.”
First published: Friday 7 June 2013
Last updated: Wednesday 20 September 2017