Monday, June 4, 2012



JANEROSE ADOLF MWASHAMBWA, 50 years, a teacher of children with disabilities and a mother of a child with an intelectual disability

My name is teacher Janerose Adolf Mwashambwa, my age is 50 years old. In 1994 I started to teach as a volunteer and in 1997 I joined Patandi College for studying special education. My first- born  child is disabled and this is what influenced me to join this college so that I can be able to assist my child.
My child's name is Irene H. Mbaga. She was born without any disability but at the age of five years she got a high fever and fell unconscious for 3 days and when she got up she could not do anything. Before this event she was in nursery school and she was able to write numbers 1-10 and vowels but after she recovered from her disease she could not do anything – not count nor write.
After my studies I went back to the medical doctor and now believe that there is nothing that can be done to improve her disability. Before studying special education I used to send my daughter to different religious congresses hoping that she will be healed and become normal again. The biggest challenge for parents is to accept that their child is disabled. You find that some of the parents shift their children from one sick station to another hoping she or he might be cured and become normal. They don’t know that disabled children learn slowly and some may recover and others may not. Parents have little understanding about disability and how to take care of  a disabled child so they need to be educated.
Only few intelectually disabled children know their expectations. When you ask them what is their ambition they will tell you I want to marry or say anything that they heard people talking about. The children’s expectations are created by both parents and teachers. Once we discover the talents and abilities of a child we train its parents on how they can continue to develop them so that the child might be able to contribute to the community.
I am not familiar with the law and rights of people with disabilites but what I know is the policy which indicates that all children, regardless of their disability or color, should go to school when they reach seven years old. Unfortunately, this policy is only implemented in urban areas and not in rural areas. I did not do research about this but this is what is happening because many schools for children with disabilities are located in urban areas.
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