Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Ramatu 2009

Things have changed a lot for Ramatu this year. When I arrived in Freetown in March I went to see Max who runs the Epilepsy Association for Sierra Leone, he told me that Ramatu's family had stopped feeding her again and that she was in a bad way. He knew of a home for disabled children in Grafton called Mahanaim that he thought might be suitable for Ramatu. I went with Max to meet the Melrose, the lady who runs the home and between us we arranged for Ramatu to go to live there.

The photo above on the left was taken a couple of days after Ramatu arrived at Mahanaim in March, the one above on the right was taken in in June after she'd been there around 3 months.

The first time I saw Ramatu this year was a couple of days after she was taken to live at Mahanaim - she was very underweight and malnousrished.

She settled in there quicky - this photo was taken a week or so after she arrived.......that day was the first time I'd ever seen her smile!!

These photos of Ramatu wearing a scarf were taken in April. Week after week I was able to see her slowly improve. After about a month she started talking - she has a very quiet voice (it hasn't been used much during the years she was kept locked in a room on her own) but she can make herself understand......she calls me Alice! She has put on weight and is now able to stand and can even walk a little with a frame. Ramatu's best friend is another girl who lives in the home called Mariama who has polio and has been in the home since she orphaned as a baby in the war. Mariama helps Ramatu with washing and dressing - they get on really well and are always together!!

Since Ramatu moved into Mahanaim her mother hasn't been in contact or visited at all - it seems her family have washed their hands of her.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ali, Thanks for the link I've signed up as your first friend. Really good to read this story and looking forward to the updates. Not long to go now.