Dear friends and supporters,
Warm festive greetings from MAITS! For the last time in 2019, we would like to thank you for your ongoing support towards our ‘Supporting Children with Disabilities in Pakistan project’. Thanks to your continuous generosity, we have managed to raise £7,508, which brings us ever closer to our target of £15,379.
As the year comes to an end, it is a good time to reflect upon the progress of the Supporting Children with Disabilities in Pakistan project, by telling you about one family whose lives have been changed by your donations, which help train therapists and community workers to identify and support children with disabilities.
We trained therapists at the Pakistani charity, ACELP, to be Master Trainers and go on to deliver training to lady community health workers. Since all finishing this training this summer, the Master Trainer therapist and lady health workers are now all busy implementing everything they have learnt into their work with families, as they assess the needs of children with disabilities within their communities and provide vital support.
Recently, the lady health workers have been working under the clinical supervision of the MAITS master trainers to support a family in Karachi, who have two disabled sons, Aziz, aged 21 and Muhammad, aged 18, alongside two disabled grandchildren, Sadia aged 5 who is blind and Amar aged 2 and a half who has cerebral palsy.
Before meeting the ACELP therapists and lady health workers, the parents were struggling to afford the daily commute to receive treatments for Aziz and Muhammad, they had no experience or training in managing their relatives’ conditions, and were hesitant to even reach out to medical staff Sadia and Amar’s disabilities.
Thankfully, they were recently referred to ACELP, where the Master Trainers have since carried out a full evaluation and, using their MAITS training, identified the best treatments for Aziz and Muhammad. The parents were also encouraged to receive care for Sadia and Amar, with the therapists explaining the vital benefits of early intervention for children with disabilities. They are now seeking medical advice for their grandchildren, which is a hugely positive turnaround from their initial hesitations.
Under supervision of the ACELP Master Trainer therapists, the community health workers carried out a home visit and disability training for the parents, following the MAITS ‘Guide for Parents Manual’. The Master Trainers at ACELP told us that that this help has “made family’s lives more comfortable and functional,” and what’s more, the feedback from the family themselves has also been fantastic. They have reported that since, Aziz and Muhammad’s “quality of live has improved.” They told us that through making their day-to-day routines easier, their children have grown in their independence and they can be properly handled at home. The trust and confidence between the whole family and the MAITS Master Trainers is flourishing.
The MAITS Community Health Worker Training enables staff to give the right information and support to parents and carers of children and young people with disabilities. Without the vital work done by the MAITS trained community health workers and Master Trainers, families like this may continue to struggle to support and provide for their children with disabilities.
We now are hoping to move on to the next stage in this project: recreating the training’s success in other areas of Pakistan. We’ve already had requests from charities in the Punjab area of Pakistan, Rawalpindi and Lahore, who are all keen to start rolling out the programme to train lady community health workers as soon as possible and increase the number of vulnerable children with disabilities that the charities reach. However, we do not currently have enough funding to do this. If we were able to raise additional funding, we can start planning this training straightway.
At this festive time of giving, please do consider supporting the growth of this project. You can also help by telling your friends and family about MAITS’ work and staying up to date by following our social media.