Ms. Mwansimu Fatuma is a mother of five living in Kijaluo, Nakasongola district. Since she had successfully delivered four of her children normally, Ms. Mwasim was certain that Rayan’s birth was going to be just the same, and yes! She successfully gave birth to Rayan.

Happy to receive her newborn baby in her arms, Ms. Mwasim couldn’t help but cuddle and caress the back of her newborn baby Ssekitoleko. As she did that, she noticed a lump surface on his back. At that moment, her mind registered that it could probably be a swelling that will disappear with time.

After being discharged from the hospital, Ms. Mwasim continued to nurse her baby from home while monitoring the swelling on his back. A week passed, and the swelling persisted. On top of that, his legs were a little too folded than normal – she noted.  It was then that the nursing mother raised the matter of concern to her husband who in turn carried Rayan to their nearest health facility for medical attention.

After review, Rayan was referred to Cure Hospital in Mbale district for proper medical attention. He was diagnosed with spina bifida, a condition affecting the development of baby Rayan’s spinal cord. At Cure Hospital, the two months old baby went through surgery to get rid of the swelling. 

When his time for school came, I couldn’t even take him to school because he couldn’t be able to support himself.

Through the community referral systems, Israel Wakyama, the Case Manager for the Comprehensive and Inclusive Prevention Project in Nakasongola district identified Rayan as one of the children with disability.  The project provided Rayan with  all the treatment required. Ms. Mwasim was also trained in home-based therapy to support Rayan.

Through this support from the project, Rayan learnt to support himself in movement. Ms. Fatuma was encouraged to take Rayan to school, which she did. Rayan is currently in baby class and loves to socialize with his classmates a lot.

“Rayan started school this year. He can write, speak with us, and also play games,” his teacher revealed.  In order to sustain the livelihood of Rayan, as well as that of her entire household, Ms. Fatuma was also advised to join the community group saving.

“I feel so good because you improved Rayan’s health. I thank Mildmay Uganda and CBM for the way that they have supported my child. May God bless you”.