I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! We had a great time celebrating our beautiful Amba’s 6th birthday. It is such a privilege to be mum and dad to such a kind, caring, funny, thoughtful, intelligent little girl. We love having you in our family Amba and thank God every day for you.
On another note we met another beautiful child last week called Philemon. One of our Tehila Activists reported her concerns about Philemon and so we visited him and his family.
Philemon is aged seven. He stays with his mother Jennifer and newborn brother Chisanga. Philemon has not walked since birth and appears to have cerebral palsy although this has not been confirmed. He needs his mum to carry him and this is becoming increasingly difficult for her as Philemon gets older and heavier! Also she has recently had another baby which makes things even more tricky. Her desire is for Philemon to go to school and for him to have a wheel chair.
Philemon has never accessed any services for children with disabilities. He has never been to school, received physiotherapy or known what it is like to sit in a wheelchair. His mother has cared for him alone with very little support and knowledge.
As I sat with Philemon and his mother, the shocking reality of inequality once again hit me full in the face. The fact that where someone is born and the family they are born into determines the opportunities and support they will recieve. I have met so many children like Philemon in the UK. I have cared for such children in my family home as I was growing up. I know the extensive services and support they and their families receive.
Yet, Philemon and his family were born in Zambia and live in a small home in a shanty town or compound area within Lusaka. His dad is a gardener and although this provides vital income, it is not enough to take them out of the material poverty that they live in. Jennifer is clearly a devoted mum who is passionate about her son being able to go to school. Yet we sensed that she almost felt powerless in achieving this for her boy.
Philemon has a right to education and healthcare like all other children. There should be no exceptions. Therefore, Tehila will commit to support Philemons family, equipping his mum and dad to advocate on their son’s behalf to access services he is entitled to.
We will do what we can to help them on this journey. We would appreciate your prayers that doors would open for this lovely boy and his family. That he would recieve all that he needs to live a full life and become all that God designed him to be.
Thank you once again to our supporters for enabling us to help children such as Philemon.
Have a great week
The Tehila Team x