Sponsor:    Fam. Minnaard, Holland
In May 2014 a girl of about 6 to 7 years old was found wandering the roads near Kade and Akwatia in the Eastern Region. The man who had found her brought her to the police station. Social Welfare brought this little girl, who was deaf and dumb according to the police, to an orphanage in Akwatia shortly afterwards.
The orphanage in Akwatia goes by the beautiful name of My Shepherd Orphanage, but we have understood that Afia has not been treated very “shepherdly” over there. We were informed that the caretakers were not very good at dealing with this intellectually disabled girl who cannot or barely speak, who is (still) not potty-trained, who hits herself now and then and who regularly drops to the ground. The only procedure one could think of was to hit her often and hard. Besides, Afia was victimized by the other children of the orphanage: she was bullied, pushed around and hit. Unfortunately, this is the ill fate of many disabled children in homes, or actually, in the whole of Ghana.
We were already asked to kindly take her up in our Community in July 2014 by somebody who was much concerned about Afia’s difficult circumstances and at the end she came to PCC in January 2015, after a judge agreed with her being admitted here already in October 2014.
At her arrival in PCC she got a new name, Rebecca and she fits in here very well.
We are looking at a sweet little girl, who had probably only slightly learnt to fend off all blows she had received, but who still appeared to react very positively to a kind and caring approach. She was constantly smiling and she immediately accepted the generous and motherly care of our caregiver Matilda.
It is great to watch her enjoy an hour of splashing around in the pool, one big party! She thinks it is great to play with all kinds of educational material together with only a small number of children. Within a few days it seemed as if she has been living here for months, she makes good use of the potty and she appears to be able to indicate that she has to go in time! She walks around hand in hand with everybody and she enjoys the food, which is offered to her: a whole new world is opening up to her!
NB: see also Albert’s Corner 28th January 2015!