It doesn’t matter what you look like on the outside, it’s what’s on the inside that counts, but our society today lacks to understand that. Children with disabilities are not less children, they deserve to be treated equally with other normal kids.
Today difference is not accepted, any slight variation is discriminated and usually looked down upon. Children with disabilities are alienated in our societies but remember, they didn’t choose to be that.
Disability is a permanent and substantial functional limitation of daily life activities caused by physical, mental or sensory impairment and environmental barriers resulting to limited participations.
It involves difficulty in hearing, difficulty in speaking and conveying messages. Difficulty in moving around and using other body parts, difficulty in seeing, strange behavior, Epilepsy, Difficulty in learning, Leprosy and Loss of feelings among others are all Multiple disabilities that young children shouldn’t have faced.
These disabilities are seen as weakness in our society that hence contribute to the stereotype that leads to the discrimination against the children with disabilities.
Despising children with disabilities is on a large scale in Uganda. Everyone has a different perception of normal and when someone cuts that boundary it results to discrimination. Some people also tend to dislike the disabled children due to their own weaknesses, to hide their own failures they will look down upon the handicap to make themselves feel better.
Some people’s self-esteem is so tiny that they have to find someone “lower than them” to feel superior. Also Uganda’s society perceives children with disabilities as useless, powerless and inefficient human beings, which also contributes to the ideology that leads to the discrimination against the disabled.
It is quiet evident that children with disabilities face barriers to participation in many activities. Children with disabilities are less likely to start school, have lower rates of school attendance and lower transition rates to higher levels of education. The gap in school attendance associated with disability observed at the primary level widens further at the secondary level given the fact that there limited numbers of secondary schools that attend to the disabled children if not, there’s none.
Still the overall quality of the educational performance for the children with disabilities is often low where they do attend school. Disabled children may also have poorer access to health services while experiencing higher health care needs because they need special treatment that is most times too expensive to the parents.
Overall, there is a perceived lack of inclusion children with disabilities in the development agenda as they tend to be discriminated by others in the society.
Generally, children with disabilities are vulnerable by virtue of their impairment and negative societal attitudes arising from fear, ignorance, superstitions, neglect and lack of awareness. As a result, children with disabilities have inadequate access to services, information, resources as well as limited participation in the socio-economic development process. Consequently, the majority depend on their families and communities for survival all their lifetime.
Even though Uganda has demonstrated its commitment to the promotion and protection of the rights of people with disabilities through adoption and implementation of both national and international policies plus legal instruments that concern children with disabilities, very many still suffer being victims.
However, we can still all do a lot more to supplement what the government does. We can advocate the children with disabilities, raise awareness campaigns, visit and donate to the disabled children in Uganda.
Join organizations like Love Uganda FoundationDisabled children of Uganda – CHRISTMAS Party at Kampala School for the disabled that have taken a hand in changing the lives of these innocent souls that didn’t have a choice but to be disabled.