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Age: 17 Published on June 7th, 2020

Ildephonse is a bright, handsome and positive young man who has benefitted greatly from his participation in Love With Actions. He was the second child born into his family with no tibia bones in his lower legs, which meant he could only move by crawling in the dirt. His parents had exhausted all of their financial resources trying to get help for the older son with this same condition, and so there was nothing they could do for Ildephonse. His mother Beatrice would carry Ildephonse to school until he finally grew too large and was forced to drop out. Ildephonse loves learning and his deepest desire was to be able to return to school. After meeting Ildephonse in 2017 Gilbert arranged to get him a wheelchair with the help of Handicap International. That allowed others to help him return to school. Thanks to many generous donors Ildephonse was admitted to Rilima Orthopedic Hospital in early 2018. He bravely endured the amputation of his lower legs and then was fitted with prosthetics and taught how to walk upright for the first time in his life. He was most excited about the possibility of returning to school. In July Ildephonse, standing on his new legs, walked up to Gilbert and said “Today I am proud of who I am.”

In September, 2018 with help from LWA, Ildephsone began his studies at Gatagara Inclusive Boarding School, two hours from his home in Bumbogo. He has thrived in that setting and was promoted to fifth grade in January, 2019. LWA covers the $300 tuition each year. Ildephonse’s older brother had his lower legs amputated as a child, but never received prosthetics, yet he is now married with children and has a good job repairing wheelchairs. Ildephonse looks up to his older brother with hope for his own future.

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