Disability is just one word to mean “not able” meaning that anyone who is not able to do anything is disabled. Disability is both physical and mental and some can be congenital or acquired. The most common forms of disability in Uganda are difficulties with walking, hearing, seeing, talking and perhaps reasoning.
Though the government of Uganda has put up several policies to ensure the just treatment of disabled people, from children to adults, males and females, but they have not been implemented and people with disability in Uganda have continuously lacked support.
Therefore, there is need for everyone to rise up, take part and play a role towards the well-being of people with physical or mental impairments.
Truthfully, living a disabled life is a hard task of its own. Being vulnerable to almost everything, having to ask out for help all the time just because your nature doesn’t enable you to help yourself. It’s a life that is simply un imaginable.
For the children, it could be easier as they have parents who are obliged to take care of them, for men, they are naturally born stronger and they can maneuver the daily struggles. But what about the woman with a disability in Uganda?
Her being a weaker sex, she has faced more challenges than any other group of the disabled in Uganda. She regularly suffers the pain of sexual abuse as she can’t defend herself. Ugandan men being merciless and shameless, they have raped her and she has innocently faced the consequences of these rude acts. Now imagine a woman who couldn’t even help herself, how she will support the two lives, both hers and the baby’s! Too bad.
She faces daily rejection from her society. According to the African myths and superstitions, anyone with a disability in Uganda is taken as bad omen. Poor her only experiences rude stares and people sitting far away from her all day along just because she is disabled. Some people don’t even call her by name, but rather by her physical disability like the deaf, the lame or the blind, something that is so breaking that she has now chosen to only live in her house. How miserable such a lonely life is!
A woman with a disability in Uganda has been denied a chance to go to school. She is living an illiterate life and the world is also comfortable with this. Parents of disabled girls have deliberately refused to sponsor their children to school, they feel it’s a wastage of money to educate a disabled child.
This lack of education has made her unemployed for the rest of her life. The fact that she doesn’t meet the qualifications, the disabled woman has been rejected in almost all job interviews. Also the society’s perception that she can’t do anything has made her lose out on all jobs since employers think she won’t meet the job demands. All that, simply because she is a disabled woman.
Her failure to find a job has made the Ugandan disabled woman live a poor life, a life of lacking all the time, putting her in a double disability state, both physically and financially. Now she cannot support herself in any way, she is simply living a vulnerable life.
More depressingly, this woman is a mother, a mother who breastfeeds, one who doesn’t have what to feed on or give to her child, a mother who doesn’t have what to put on or the child’s cloths, and probably a homeless mother. That’s her, she is a woman with a disability in Uganda.
We can help her, we can support her, we can give her new hope, and we rebuild her life again. Just support the non-government organizations that stretch a helping hand to people with any form of disability in Uganda, widows, girl children, orphans, street children and poor communities.
Let’s send her back to school, start up a business for her, send her child to school too and resettle her life. She is human too.