ELoH provides vital support for children who have lost their limbs through war, accidents, and lack of access to medical care.
Thousands of young amputees in developing countries suffer every day, with little or no access to vital medical assistance, social support or education. As a result, they face life-threatening infections, struggle to move around, and are isolated from society.
Inspired by the resilience and courage of Pollyanna Hope, who lost her leg aged two in a terrible bus collision in the UK, ELoH’s mission is to bring hope and opportunity to some of the most vulnerable child amputees in the world. Through the generosity of our supporters, we have already changed the lives of over 250 child amputees in Tanzania, Sierra Leone and Liberia, and have trained an orthopaedic surgeon who has treated over 1,000 young disabled patients.
Each ELoH project is tailored to the specific situation of child amputees in the countries we work in, utilising local knowledge in the application of ELoH’s expertise in amputee health. We aim to promote both physical and social mobility for our beneficiaries, and our activities always include the provision of prosthetics and physiotherapy.
Depending on local needs, projects may include any of the following aspects:
- Access to mobility: we provide access to prosthetics or other mobility devices (crutches, wheelchairs), surgeries and aftercare to ensure comfortable use. We are committed to providing medical support to each individual child until it stops growing.
- Access to education: we support the integration of child amputees into schools, by paying for school fees and associated costs (books, uniforms) for one year. We ensure admission in suitable institutions, from nursery school to university level. Additionally, some students are enrolled in skills training courses, ranging from IT studies to vocational training as electricians and tailors.
- Family Business Scheme: to ensure that sustainable educational support for the child can be secured in the future, we address the underlying issue of gross poverty that characterises most child amputees’ homes. The programme consists of business mentoring and training to develop an individually tailored business plan. The families then access micro-grants and savings schemes, which sees the family use the income to grow their business and save the profits.
- Access to counselling: the social work component recognises that each of the beneficiaries is likely to face individual barriers in their homes, in their education, and in combatting their disabilities with some having struggled considerably due to stigma or trauma. We provide individual, family and group counselling.
- Fighting against stigma: Cultural stigmas are part of the reason why child amputees are at a greater risk than the average child of not receiving an education. We therefore engage with communities and the broader public through radio programmes and stakeholder meetings to educate the public about the rights of disabled people and to discourage discrimination.
We believe all child amputees deserve to live a happy and healthy life. Your help can bring us closer to making this happen.