The 7 year-old Simaira Angele was born with mobility impairment which prevented her from walking because of the pains that she felt in every attempt to walk. She is the last born in a family of 10 and comes from a polygamous family. Her father, Teffo Godfrey aged 72, narrates how he met an angle who added value to the life of his child, Simaria.
Having to provide for his ten children from his farm produce has been a struggle for Mr. Teffo. Condition became worst when Samira was born with her condition without financial backing to take care of the child. “Samaria was born with bilateral knock knees which kept her on her down for 4 years without walking. Taking care of her has been an extra burden to the family because I had to carry the child to school on daily basis at the expense of other home responsibilities, the child could not play with her peers normally which caused her siblings to be grounded around her to keep her company,” explained Simaira ‘s mother, Teffo Pauline.
They live in a small village, Koptamo in Foumban, West Region where it is believed that disability comes as a result of witchcraft. “When Simaira was born many people in the village advised us to kill the child because, according to them, Simaira was not a normal child giving that she couldn’t walk at age 4. We received all types of insults, stigmatizing and slangs and that is when we decided to take our child to the hospital,” added Samaira’s mother.
While at the Catholique Notre Dame De La Sante De Btsenga hospital, the child was assessed and referred for surgery which was going to cost over 800,000fcfa. “Without even a consultation fee to pay, we cried out and said our child will have to live like that for the rest of her life because we couldn’t afford such an amount. Aware of our condition, the head of the EDID Program Partner Organization (PO), Compagnie Chitou Ramadam Koufontom Founban, asked us to go for an orthopedic surgery in Dschang which was going to be paid by the Liliane Funds through the EDID Program. As depressed as we were, I shared tears of joy,” testified Simaira’s father.
“As if it was a joke, we struggled and raised a little money which was added by the EDID Program through the PO and my daughter was operated upon. Tears ran down my chicks when my daughter came out of the theater. A month later after being discharged from the hospital, just like a dream Samaira was able to get up from bed and walk. This action drew the attention of everyone in the village”. Samaria’s mother recalled as she burst into tears of joy.
Samaira’ treatment made her parents answer hundreds of questions from villagers and all along, they told them they made an angle who gave our daughter a value to her life.
Three years after her operation, Simaira is able to walk to school, play with her friends accompany her parents to the farm and participate in other social activities. Her parent’s desire for her is that she should study and become an orthopedic surgeon in the future so that she can operate others.
Samaira’s parents continue to appreciate the partner organization that journeyed with them throughout the surgery, the EDID program and the Liliane Foudation for sponsoring the surgery which has given new impetus to Simaira’s life.