Week 7: Wheels for the World in Uganda 2021 - Supported Distribution
Supported Distribution to the Bidi Bid Refugee Camp, N.W. Uganda
Wheels Blog Week 7 (15th to 18th March 2021)
You may have noticed a difference in the timescale for this week’s distribution. This is because we have decided to extend the distribution by three days (ending Friday 19th) to enable the remaining wheelchairs to be allocated. We were able to do this because of the TTR team members who have offered additional time. In saying this, this in no way takes anything away from those who were unable to continue past the dates they originally committed to and for whom we are so grateful. We must also pay tribute to the Hope Health Action (HHA) team out in Bidi Bidi who have agreed to continue and have worked tirelessly in 40°C heat, each morning taking a loaded pick-up truck out into different areas of the Camp to give a gift of a wheelchair or walking aid to people whose lives are then transformed.
So far this week, and with a day to go, we have seen 57 people varying in age from two to ninety nine. Each of them treated with care and compassion by our HHA colleagues ‘on the ground’. Each person has an individual story of hardship; the majority fleeing for their lives from attack by South Sudanese rebels in 2016. People like Shifrah Tokosang, born in 1947. She is from South Sudan and arrived in Bidi Bidi in 2016.
In 2020 she started feeling weakness in her both legs which worsened until she could no longer walk, go for prayers, or even prepare herself a meal. She has spent most of her time inside her house.
Her children do not live with her; some have died, her daughters have married and have moved out and others are still in South Sudan. Her wheelchair will now help her move around and even get to the church.
On Monday we were shown a photo of a badly malnourished lady, Sejerina, who looked far older than her 52 years. She was pictured leaning against a wall sitting on a low bed in her hut with little flesh on her bones and our hearts went out to her. The HHA team were visiting her in her home with the intention of giving her a wheelchair, but her condition has deteriorated such that she would be unable to sit in a normal chair. It was clear that she needed medical attention and we are praying that the HHA team will be able to refer her for treatment. Sadly we are sure there are many more people like Sejerina in the refugee camp and we have heard that UNHCR have recently cut the food rations that are handed out to refugees by 40% due to lack of funding. Please pray for Sejerina and her family. We may not know much about her, but God does and He hears the cry of our hearts.
At the end of every distribution the choice of wheelchairs or walking aids becomes more and more limited and the team has to adapt what they have to suit the people coming for an aid. This distribution is no different. Our brilliant HHA partner have coped with the challenge fabulously and our thanks go to them for this amazing adaptation of a walking aid by adding a spare pair of footplates. This will enable 13 year old Abudu’s father to push him to school where he can then use it to walk around. Here are the smiling faces of Moses, Agnes and Clement, with Abudu who is already very proud of it and has named it ‘Landcruncher Prado’.