Shabana got married when she was only 14. She lives with her husband and in laws in Rasheedabad Abadi New Karachi poor area locality. Shabana’s husband runs a small shop where he grinds the grain and earns barely enough money to feed his family.
One day while cooking Shabana tried to pull out a stick from the fire when the burning stick struck her left eye. She was badly wounded and was screaming in pain when her husband took her to small hospital due to lack of medical facility available in their area. According to Shabana the pain was unbearable but she had to bear it till the time we reached hospital.
The doctor examined her eye and gave her first aid. On her follow up visit the doctor after her examination told Shabana’s husband that she had developed cataract her eye because of injury and needs to be operated immediately which would cost them Rs. 15000 after discount. Upon hearing this both the husband & wife were dumbfounded as Shabana’s husband barely earned enough money to feed the family. They could not even imagine of affording this expense. They returned home in despair but soon they realized that Shabana was finding it difficult to perform her daily chores. Shabana’s husband was upset seeing her condition and went to his landlord begging him to lend him the money which he blatantly refused. With a heavy heart he returned home where his old mother now had to do all the household work.
One year later Shabana’s husband went to another Hospital for his cousin’s wedding where he came to know about a free eye hospital in North Karachi. At first he did not believe that the entire treatment including surgeries was provided free by the hospital. But when one of his uncles confirmed that he got his eye operated from LRBT he decided to take Shabana there. He returned home the very next day and took Shabana to LRBT North Karachi hospital. The doctors examined her thoroughly and prescribed some medicine for her swollen eye, giving her a surgery date. After 15 days, they came to LRBT North Karachi again where she was operated successfully. Both Shabana and her husband were overjoyed. Shabana said, “I’m lost for words to describe my feelings. It was very embarrassing for me to see my old mother in law do all the house hold work. Now LRBT has given me new life and I owe to serve my in laws. I will pray to Allah Almighty for the success of LRBT always and for showering His blessings upon the kind staff and donors.
Nine year old Sakina lives in a refugee camp near Pakistan-Afghan border with her family and other refugees who fled Afghanistan during the 1980s Soviet war. Born and brought up in a camp Sakina never went to a school like other children of her age and instead helped her mother with her chores. Her self employed father worked as a fruit vendor and earned barely enough to feed his family and was left with very little money to spend on other necessities including health care. Few months back Sakina’s mother noticed that her daughter is facing trouble in performing her routine work and seeks her help every now and then for tasks that she previously performed independently. She then realized that Sakina had trouble seeing clearly. Her father took her to a local eye specialist in Peshawar who upon her examination diagnosed her with developed cataract in her right eye and to save her vision surgery was the only option that would cost Rs. 15000/-; an expenditure which Sher Khan simply couldn’t afford. Disheartened, they returned to their camp praying to God for a miracle. But her fate was destined to change the day Sher Khan’s friend told him about a free eye hospital in Mandra where all treatment including surgeries was provided absolutely free of cost. Upon reaching there, Sakina was thoroughly examined and was operated under general anesthesia. When her bandage was removed, she slowly opened her eyes and her joy knew no bounds & she exclaimed, " I can see again". His father was also overjoyed and said, “This hospital is a safety net for the poor like my self and I can never thank enough the staff and doctors here who have brought back light in my daughter’s life and saved her from a life of darkness and destitution
Osama was the only son of Noora bibi who was a widow residing in Karachi. Her husband died when Osama was only 4 and she shifted to her brother’s house who was a taxi driver earning barely enough money to feed his family and his widow sister who were now totally dependent on him. When Osama was 5 years old he complained about his diminishing vision but Noora bibi could not afford to get him treated and tried several local remedies but in vain. Now at the age of 8 Osama could barely see and was dropped out of his school. Poor Noora bibi was very worried but could not do anything but pray to God for a miracle. One of her neighbors seeing Noora's condition asked her husband for help who told her about a free eye hospital in Korangi. She immediately went to Noora bibi to share the good news who upon hearing this prayed to God with tearful eyes for her son’s sight. Both the women took Osama to LRBT Free eye hospital in Korangi where his eyes were thoroughly examined and he was diagnosed with Cataract in both eyes which if not treated immediately may not cure completely. Upon finding out that Noora Bibi could not even afford the traveling expense Osama was admitted to the hospital to be operated the very next day. His surgery was performed the next morning and upon removing his bandage Osama was more than happy to be able to see again. Tears fell from Noora bibi’s eyes when she saw her son being able to see again and she said, “I have no words to express my gratitude to the hospital staff and the donors who have brought back light in our lives.”
Discrimination against girls and women in the under developed world is a devastating reality and females with a disability suffer even more. 2 1/2 years old Humna is a classic example of this inequity. Born into a very poor family, Humna is Zafar’s first child who was born after 8 years of his marriage, but when he found out that their baby is a girl he was not very pleased and called her just another expense. Instead of being a source of joy for the family, Zafar considered Humna as a liability and blamed & cursed her mother Rukhsana for giving birth to a girl.
But this was not the end of Rukhsana’s ordeal. A few weeks later she noticed white spots in Humna’s eyes and immediately took her to a local doctor. Upon her examination the doctor diagnosed cataract in both her eyes and advised surgery that would cost them them Rs. 30,000/- Hearing the news, Zafar lost control and threw both of them out of his house calling them ill-fated.
Poor Rukhsana moved to her father’s house and started teaching Quran to young children to earn her living. She dreaded the thought of her daughter staying blind for life and prayed to God for a miracle and one day her prayers were finally answered. Rukhsana’s father found out about LRBT free eye hospital in Korangi and immediately took his grand daughter there for her examination. Humna was given a date for surgery and was operated successfully.
Rukhsana’s joy knew no bounds as now her daughter would lead a normal life and would not have to bear the stigma of being blind owing to which she was disowned by her own father. She is deeply thankful to the staff and donors of LRBT for giving a new bright life to her beloved daughter.
Story of Rabia
35 years old Rabia got blind in one eye when she was very young. Living in a small town of Naseerabad her parents did not have access to proper treatment and poor Rabia lost her eye. Although visually disabled, Rabia was a cheerful person and performed her daily chores, looked after the house and her family until one day her 3 year old nephew hit her with sharp stick that pierced her left eye. Her parents immediately took her to a local doctor who gave her some painkillers that relieved the pain but soon her vision started to deteriorate with a white spot that appeared on her cornea.
Rabia who uptil now was facing life’s challenges courageously now lost hope as she had become dependant on her parents. Upon finding out about her condition, her in-laws also broke the engagement which came as another shock to the poor family. Her desperate parents took her to an eye specialist who diagnosed traumatic hyper mature Cataract in her eye that needed to be operated costing them Rs.15,000/- which they simply couldn’t afford and returned home hoping for a miracle.
Their prayers were answered soon when a neighbor told her to visit LRBT hospital in Gambat where all treatment as well as surgery is performed absolutely free.
She visited the hospital with her aunt on 26-10-2011 and after her thorough examination she was given a date for her surgery. Upon arriving on the given date her surgery was performed under latest Technique of Phaco emulsification with Intra Ocular Lens.
By The Grace of Almighty Allah her vision in her left eye was restored and Rabia was very happy to be able to see clearly once again. She was full of prayers for the supporters and staff of LRBT and regarded the hospital as a safety net for poor blind of Pakistan.
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