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Kenya: Families with special needs children concerned about care during COVID crisis in Nairobi03:56

Kenya: Families with special needs children concerned about care during COVID crisis in Nairobi

Kenya, Nairobi
June 5, 2020 at 17:59 GMT +00:00 · Published

Families of disabled children in Nairobi are growing increasingly concerned over the quality and availability of care for their loved ones during the COVID-19 crisis, as the lockdown has cut them off from their usual resources.

Sylvia Moraa Mochabo, the mother of two autistic children, expressed fears that if she were to catch the virus, the government would not be able to provide the specialised care her children require, while speaking on Wednesday, May 29.

"I have been having sleepless nights just wondering what happens if one of them gets sick or I am the one who brings it home because I still have to fend for them. Is the government even ready to take charge and to take care of us?" Mochabo asked.

"Because if a caregiver gets sick you cannot be with children. If the children sick the caregiver has to also be replaced. Are they even aware of what a neurodiverse child requires?" she added.

As the lockdown has also left many out of work, families are being forced to make difficult financial choices due to costs like medication and other types of therapeutical treatment.

"Right now we're trying to decide, do I buy the food or do I buy medication? If it goes two days without medication, we will require to take them to hospital," Mochado explained.

Rubai Adesa, another mother of a disabled child who lives in the Kibera slum area of Nairobi, is in even more dire circumstances.

"I used to be a domestic worker, working for an old lady. I had to leave it because the work demands I leave at 20:00 but with the curfew now, I cannot manage. I had to stop working and now I am with my baby, just pushing with life the way it is taking us," Adesa said.

"I am not working, only my husband is working, if he gets something, we eat, if he doesn't, we go hungry. That's it," she added.

Reports indicate that the partial lockdown in Kenya will soon be completely lifted, and the government recently announced that national carrier Kenya Airways will resume flights on June 8.

Kenya: Families with special needs children concerned about care during COVID crisis in Nairobi03:56
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Families of disabled children in Nairobi are growing increasingly concerned over the quality and availability of care for their loved ones during the COVID-19 crisis, as the lockdown has cut them off from their usual resources.

Sylvia Moraa Mochabo, the mother of two autistic children, expressed fears that if she were to catch the virus, the government would not be able to provide the specialised care her children require, while speaking on Wednesday, May 29.

"I have been having sleepless nights just wondering what happens if one of them gets sick or I am the one who brings it home because I still have to fend for them. Is the government even ready to take charge and to take care of us?" Mochabo asked.

"Because if a caregiver gets sick you cannot be with children. If the children sick the caregiver has to also be replaced. Are they even aware of what a neurodiverse child requires?" she added.

As the lockdown has also left many out of work, families are being forced to make difficult financial choices due to costs like medication and other types of therapeutical treatment.

"Right now we're trying to decide, do I buy the food or do I buy medication? If it goes two days without medication, we will require to take them to hospital," Mochado explained.

Rubai Adesa, another mother of a disabled child who lives in the Kibera slum area of Nairobi, is in even more dire circumstances.

"I used to be a domestic worker, working for an old lady. I had to leave it because the work demands I leave at 20:00 but with the curfew now, I cannot manage. I had to stop working and now I am with my baby, just pushing with life the way it is taking us," Adesa said.

"I am not working, only my husband is working, if he gets something, we eat, if he doesn't, we go hungry. That's it," she added.

Reports indicate that the partial lockdown in Kenya will soon be completely lifted, and the government recently announced that national carrier Kenya Airways will resume flights on June 8.

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