BAYISENGE Elione 5 years
Elione is one of Liliane’s three daughters. Elione’s disability was apparent from birth when doctors discovered physical and mental incapacities. Doctors’ also believed that Elione was blind. Recently, however, Liliane believes that her daughter can see, as she will track people and objects in a room or large space. Since her birth her father, Jean Damascene, has supported Elione and her mother fully. He is present and supportive, fulfilling all responsibilities as a loving parent and husband. The family feels very lucky as their extended family members have also been supportive. At 12 months old, Elione began treatment at various local hospitals. She started with medicine to help her cope with intense stimuli which previously caused her to be scared and cry. At Gatagara hospital, Elione attended a few physiotherapy sessions. Unfortunately, the family cannot afford to buy the medicine or continue to attend physiotherapy at Gatagara. Currently even without medicine, Elione’s condition is still well managed.
Parents caring for a child with a disability in Rwanda often feel ashamed, alone and lost. It is not easy for them to learn how to care for their special needs child. As a parent, you want to fix every struggle, but this is one that cannot be fixed. Liliane struggled for a long time, figuring out how to cope with their situation. Joining the support group at LWA has greatly improved Liliane’s feelings. This positive change in her attitude has been the most influential change for the entire family. Today they live a peaceful life and enjoying dancing and singing together. Soon,the family hopes to find funding so Elione can continue her treatment.