Guest post by Akili Dada Fellow, Maria Omare:
Children living with disabilities in slum areas are often isolated and lack access to essential services such as therapy and education and this has contributed to poor physical, mental and social health. This has largely resulted from social stigma and myths surrounding disabilities in the area. In an effort to improve the lives of children with physical and intellectual challenges, I founded The Action Foundation.
The mission of The Action Foundation is to create a better future for children living with physical and intellectual disabilities through sport, health promotion, therapy, advocacy and awareness building. Specifically, we are improving access to therapy, nutritional care and education to children living with disabilities in Kibera slums. Through my fellowship with Akili Dada, I am able to build the networks and receive the mentoring necessary to scale the work of our organization and deepen our impact.
In the next year, we hope to develop our centre to be well staffed and equipped to cater to children with special needs in Kibera slums. Improved nutrition status, motor and social skills will be a key measure of the success of the project. To achieve this, financial resources are required to purchase the equipment and essential supplies. Recruiting professionals in special education, art therapy and physiotherapy will also contribute to the success of the project. The best way to contribute to the project is through making a donation (monetary or in-kind) or volunteering as a special needs teacher or physiotherapist.