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Reaching vulnerable children


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Reaching vulnerable children

  1. 1. Reaching vulnerable children Mr.Rehmat din family For the first time I came across to meet Seema Bibi in Nasheman School for Special Education Wah cantt,and as usual as many parents of Intellectual disable children specially mother’s do…….. In Pakistan due to their poverty are looking and wondering about to meet people who would listen about the problems they are facing and helping them out in monetary form. Initially Mrs.Irfana kayyani the Sports teacher and volunteer coach of Special Olympics Pakistan told some of her story and asked me to met her as she is very depressed and all the time pray to Allah for death wish for her sons which she thought earlier would have been cured and one day will be able to help them live a peaceful life. Being mother of two children who too are intellectual disable, was a real shock to hear about this .I know how difficult it is but being a member of Special Olympics Pakistan I have learned ‘NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE JUST BE COMMITED TO YOUR TASK AND SOONER OF LATER EVERYTHING WILL BE POSSIBLE this is the best thing I always heard by the officials of Special Olympics Pakistan Team. These encouragements lead my confidence and now I feel sky is the only limit!! She told me that she works as a maiden in two three houses and earns only 1500Rs per month which is less than 15 dollars a month. Husband is also not educated and work on daily wages as a mansion and his earning is also not more than 30 dollars a month. They have four children the elder one is normal aged 26years old also work as a carpenter in a workshop. The rest of the three boys are intellectually disable children .the younger one named as osama age 14 years is a slower learner is attending the school where as the other two have never been out of the house due to their severe mental conditions. Zia-ur-Rehman(19Years) Waheed-ud-Din(22years)
  2. 2. During this conversation she was bitterly crying and told me about her initial story. She said waheed was born at home .never notice anything until the age of two years but after that they took him to different places for spiritual healing where those people exploited them and told them that this child has some devil spirits which they will cure .she told me that I still remember when for the first time a baba hit my two and half year son with sticks at his back and he was fainted. This practice carried on for many years not only to one but more spiritual healers in the surrounding area’s who not only hooked up the children but also looted away their savings too! Meanwhile the other boy was also born with the same problem and again we believed in the stories as told by many people .when they were of age of 4 plus took them to nearby Government hospital where we were not been giving clear diagnoses for our children. We could not afford private medical consultation for our children. First my husband use to work and I stayed back to lookafter the children but many times we had only able to have food for one time in the whole day ..Sometime some relatives helped us also. Things were getting bad day by day; I could not see my children crying due to hunger so I in morning would lock zia and Waheed inside a room leave some bread and water for them and went to work as a cleaner in nearby area. Many time people living near to us use to complain that your children shouts a lot and our children get afraid. On hearing this I use to beat them and onwards I chained them so that they could not reach to the window and open it up. When osama was born I was happy as he seems to be normal so it was a happy moment in my life. Osama did not perform well in government school and they told me that he is slow in his studies so take him to a special school my husband wanted him to put him in a motorcar workshop so that he will be able to learn some skill. I never wanted him to go their because I knew that they will make him work all day long and are going to give him only 20rs in a day and secondly I came to know from somebody that the so called ustahad (the head of workshop )brutally beat small children and also sexually harass these children. I visited the school in wah cant and asked help from the principal With the help of the principal Mrs.Farhana Tanveer I was able to admit him in the school. I am thankful for her cooperation she has also given fees concession also for osama The condition of my other children are getting worst day by day as they are now bigger and I am getting weak .They shout fight with each other and many time hit me also .I cannot handle them .I went to edhi centre in taxila and requested them to put my children in the centre which they refused .Kindly help me in putting these children in the centre because now we are not in a position to look after them. I visited her house and saw another part of the story which too was sad .there was one girl age between 20 or 21 which I thought was some relative but she told me that she is the wife of the elder son .she was expecting a baby and a small boy was sitting in her lap too which was her grandson who too was special .she told me that me and my husband thought that the elder son should be married earlier so that somebody will be around in the house helping with zia and waheed whereas now she herself has to look after her own child, expecting good resulted in more frustration and worst condition for the family I shared this story with our National coordinator Tehmina Azim and Arshad javaid as we were holding a seminar for Family Support Network in wah cantt.Tehmina wanted to meet the family so they were invited in the seminar .
  3. 3. All the team members felt sorry for the family and emphasized that a plan should be made for the betterment of these boys. Initally me along with the help of Mrs.farhana Tanveer their sports coach Irfana kayani and special Olympics Athlete Obiad frequently visited the family at their place.During these visits we also notice that waheed is very aggressive and difficult to handle he cannot walk properly just because he had be more frequently been chained and so had very limited access to walk .Mrs.Farhana Tanveer help us to use the physiotherapy room in her school in improving in his walk . Meanwhile we also arrange religious Qari shahab to visit the family and should make prayers for the family and give them a right religious point of view about taking good care of these children. After these visits the family seems a bit relax and things started moving in the right direction .boys were a bit freindly again amazing Athletes!!! Today visited this family again after two months to see how these boys were doing at home. Really was amazed to see that they remembered me and the school they previously visited .They were anxious to go to school play ground again .They are four brother in a family except one ,having multiple Intellectual disabilities .The youngest most osama goes to a special school as he is more independent .This family was registered with FSN SPECIAL OLYMPICS PAKISTAN .Their father is a mason so have very limited recourses and mother look after them alone. Previously she told me that at times it become so difficult from me to handle them that I use to tie them with chains .She complained about the society who simply does not give acceptance to them. She said I simply want that people should not get afraid of them they should show love and respect them. she welcomed me again as she was happy that the activities and toys we provided them were of great help for her as when she is busy doing some work she gives them toys and they get themselves busy in playing together and the mother gets some time off.I also notice that playing with balls have improved their holding and throwing skills too. .Inshallah I will try my level best to make at least one visit every month and play with them .Really they felt very happy and this is what life is all about .let them live in that moment of happiness and joy. These kids deserve respect and equal treatment, not pity.Anyone who is interested in spending two hours playing activities with these boys can contact me. I tell you ,You'll experience the best thing about life and enjoyment!!!!
  4. 4. Because of their progress we named them AMAZING ATHLETES!!! Onwards came a big excitement for Mr and Mrs Rehmat Din as they were invited as chief guest in the National Summit arrange by FAMILY SUPPORT NETWORK SPECIAL OLYMPICS PAKISTAN The Prince and the Princess of FSN summit in Karachi. I am really happy that FSN had given opportunity to this family to attend the summit. The mother has always remained in home; she has never even visited Islamabad which is not a faraway place from taxila. The smile on their face shows FSN is able to break down their "ISOLATION"!!!!!! They are the parents of the "AMAZING ATHLETES “who are been registered with SOP, The coaches volunteers and families altogether putting their effort in bring this family to a place of acceptance, love and care!!!!!!!!!!!
  5. 5. We hope that in near future we are going arrange more activities for these children .Specially eid festival in coming a head next month so everyone from SOP are trying to make arrangements regarding them to remember this festival memorable for the family and these Athletes . After summer holidays, their training session will be started and we will keep on informing their achievements!!!!!!!! Reported by Lubna Nawaz SPECIAL OLYMPICS PAKISTAN