SNP-Africa is a brainchild of a working mother of a girl born with Cerebral Palsy.
THE INSPIRATION BEHIND SNP-AFRICA
The motivation behind SNP-Africa is driven by a story told by one mother. She narrates without knowing how her rights and that of her child were not protected, through available systems that might have offered that support.
A mother narrates: “I joined an organization as a senior professional, with the necessary qualifications and experience in my area of expertise. I was later subjected to go through a daunting experience after being forced to report to another colleague who had no clue what the subject matter was. I was to later to discover that it was a plan to frustrate me so that I would quit; but I persevered because I knew the burden I had to bear. Quitting was ot an option, with a child who needs constant care and therapy and medication, that was my last option. The frustrations became so overwhelming that at one point I left my house after returning from work to buy my daughter’s seizure control drug (Tegretol), which had run out that afternoon. I got to the pharmacy, bought the drug and forgot it right there. I went all the way back home to discover I had forgotten the drug. Meanwhile, as I left the drug, my mind was preoccupied with the day’s events at work. That is when I realized the challenge mothers of special needs children face and the need to set up an organization that will fight for our rights and stand up for us. I set out to find a name, and what came to mind was SNP-Africa.
The Mother is child’s most trusted associate:
Disabled children are more vulnerable to abuse, exploitation, neglect and discrimination. They face reduced social participation and have less access to education and other social services than children without disabilities. In Africa and some parts of the World, organizations and institutions which aim to support children with disability, do not give much thought to role of the mother in protection of the child’s right. SNP Africa intends to focus on protection of the disabled child by protecting the rights of the mother.
Before institutions or policies, mothers are the ones charged with responsibility to protect and nurture their child with disability. It is therefore important to understand that if this mother’s rights are not protected then she or her child will not successfully participate in any development interventions. Whether it is because of time constraint, discrimination or stigmatization. Many reasons come to play in hindering development for people with disability.
SNP Africa Programs are built around the understanding that every special-needs child is different and every family is unique; however, there are some common concerns that link mothers of challenged children, including getting appropriate care and accommodations; promoting acceptance in the extended family, school and community; planning for an uncertain future; and adjusting routines and expectations. Parents of children with special needs are often more flexible, compassionate, stubborn and resilient than other parents.
Global Survey on HIV/AIDS and Disability
People with Disabilities have significantly elevated risk of physical violence, sexual abuse and rape; yet have little or no access to the police or legal system for protection, and have less access to medical interventions and counselling than their non disabled peers.
2. Mothers of children with disability have an additional role added onto the reproductive and productive work; taking care of a special needs child is not easy task.
3. Mothers of children with disability have the right to be supported through structures and systems to successfully care for their children