Disability in the face of Covid 19

February 16, 2021

A ROOTS staff member talks to *Chipo about her life challenges.

A ROOTS staff member talks to *Chipo about her life challenges.

Disability is a social construct where persons are said to be such based on certain handicaps that inhibits their full bodily function that is expected of them. It is a pity because not only are persons living with certain handicaps labeled disabled but also they are discriminated against and hence fail to achieve their full potential due to lack of access to education, employment opportunities and even health. Especially in Africa countries’fiscal budgets are barely sufficient to cater for all the needs of this group of people given that their challenges differ because their handicaps are not homogeneous, which even doubles the challenge of mainstreaming them in developmental efforts. During this 2nd wave of Covid-19, ROOTS has been giving out food packs to vulnerable communities and their priority was of people who are living with disability.It was our observation that people with mental health challenges are at the mercy of a society that does not fully comprehend the dynamics around mental challenges and  treats them inhuman.*Chipo is such one young woman who is 20 years of age and suffers from occasional dimentia. She has 2 children who are barely 2 years apart whose fathers are unknown. She survives through alms from neighbors as her only care giver is an  aged grandmother. Given that she also contracted HIV at 16 because men in the neighborhood have a tendency of exploiting her sexually, she needs a  special diet to take her medication and also someone who monitors  how she takes her medication. This story is just one of the many that are happening in our communities. There is an urgent need to help this population as they also need to enjoy the same human rights as everyone else.


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