Continuing on from the October blog about our 8 below knee amputees, we have recently started the measurement and casting for a group of 8 above knee amputees. SSLDF are extremely fortunate to have established this project with Arms Around Sierra Leone, an American organisation over the past 6 years.
Our above amputees have their own stories to tell about living in Sierra Leone with a disability.
Foday Kanu is our youngest patient ages 16, he had a motorbike accident in 2012 with no option but to amputate his left leg. He explains how challenging it has been to grow up being ‘different’ to other children around him. “Sierra Leone is a tough place to be disabled, but with the support of AASL I will now be able to walk with two legs. Every Saturday morning I play football at Wussum Field with my fellow amputees, it gives me an opportunity to talk to others who are also in my position.”
At the opposite end of the scale in terms of age is 45 year old Issa Sesay who was shot during the Civil War by the rebels. “I am 7 foot tall and have always used crutches, this has taken its toll on my body in terms of the balance of weight. I am so pleased to have this opportunity of a prosthetic leg after all this time! I am also most grateful to my wife who has stayed with me despite the difficulties, unlike some of my friends whose family and friends abandoned me due to their condition.“
Hawa Turay, aged 25 is the only female patient in this group of 8 above knee amputees. Hawa is a strong, independent and jovial young lady with two young children. She was in a car accident at 12 years old but the damaged leg never healed and became tumorous over the years. After 12 years of discomfort and pain the doctors finally decided to amputate last year as the tumour was too acute to treat here in Sierra Leone.