‘ I have been teaching Nuriya, Dagem’s carer, the full range of massage techniques that she must use. She has learned a part each day and the following morning she has used it on Dagem with me supervising. I brought training material with me but she has hardly had to look at it as she’s learning so quickly and with so much enthusiasm. She has memorised each step perfectly. Dagem is enjoying it like crazy. He’s already much more animated with his head, his look, his smile and he’s even starting to move his shoulder blades. In addition we are practising exercises that Nuriya will be able to use on him at a later stage. Especially focusing on the manipulation of the shoulder blades and disassociating them from the head to see if the arms can be made to move towards the stomach. We are working on a mattress, on a big Pilates ball and on a moving board like a go-cart that we have designed for him that gives him greater autonomy and allows him to participate in the same activities as the other children. He really enjoys the ‘go-cart’ and the other children enjoy playing with him on it. I am making bandage ‘tapping’ on his pectorals to open and allow movement above and to avoid the shortening of his muscles. Nuriya is learning this and will continue to do this with him. I have also taught and delivered learning materials with photos about his feeding, breathing, clapping massage to eliminate mucous and the stimulation of his oral facial cavity with materials that I brought especially for this purpose. I have also constructed various splints, one for him to rest his neck and elevate his chin, one for each hand to keep them open and one for each elbow to give extension and functionality to the higher parts of his arms.'
31 Aug 2011
This is Dagem. When we first met him he didn't respond to anyone and wasn't even able to lift his head. Now he is a happy child. His eyes sparkle and his skin shines. Hopefully in the next intake there will be more children presented who have this condition, we know they exist we just need their families to overcome the stigma that surrounds them and bring them to Abugida.
As I’m sure you’ll remember last Nov we started a school-feeding programme at the Fitawrari Public School. We built and fitted out a kitchen and washroom and we renovated an existing room to act as the dining room. We contracted four cooks chosen from the most needy mothers of Abugida. During the term time 113 children of the primary school have breakfast, lunch and tea, chosen from the orphans, those who are HIV+ and those with very difficult family situations. We also provide breakfast for all the 160 children of the preschool; the most needy of those also have lunch and tea.
This is the first summer that we have had the kitchen operational at Fitawrari and here we attach some photos. It is the rainy season and it is cold in Akaki and for this reason the dining room fulfils a second function of keeping the children warm. The dining room is also operating at the Biru Tesfa preschool where there are 100 children using this facility. We are awaiting photos.
Photos: Waiting for lunch, cooking in turns.
30 Aug 2011
We are happy to announce that super Barry arrived last Friday in Addis Ababa. For those who don't know him he is our volunteer constructor who makes possible the impossible. Who obtains the correct prices for work when we're having our leg pulled. Who understand everything structural and technical and is the first to roll his selves up and get to work. Thanks to him we were able to build the extensions and additional buildings at Abugida, make all the repairs to the Biru Tesfa School and repair the bathrooms at Fitawrari School.
Barry will go to Sebeta to find a solution for the repugnant bathrooms of the blind children who are living there in squalor. Barry will go to the headquarters of the train company to agree a quote for the repair and fitting of a space owned by that company which is planned for an old peoples community centre. Barry has to resolve the issue of the cesspit at Abugida, which has not been enlarged despite the large increase in the numbers of children. He also has to tackle many other pending repairs at Abugida, which is like the Sagrada Familia church in Barcelona never seems to end. Barry will go to Biru Tesfa School to inspect the quality of the work of the Ethiopian constructor that we contracted to see if he is worth using again.
Have a good trip Barry!