A Simple Kindness
I met Amina standing in the waiting room at the mobile clinic. I noticed on her face an old injury that had healed which resembled a burn. I gently came near her, greeted her, and asked, “Sister, did you get burnt in the face?” "Yes,” she replied. “I got burnt after falling into a fire. I have epilepsy.”
I met Amina standing in the waiting room at the mobile clinic. I noticed on her face an old injury that had healed which resembled a burn. I gently came near her, greeted her, and asked, “Sister, did you get burnt in the face?” “Yes,” she replied. “I got burnt after falling into a fire. I have epilepsy.”
She told me that she was feeling pain today. I took her outside to get some fresh air away from the other patients. As I sat down beside her, Amina had a seizure and fell on my lap.
My colleague rushed over and helped me lay her gently on the bench and open her airway. Amina was unconscious for awhile and then woke up. I took her inside where she was given medication.
Some months later, I followed up with Amina when she returned to the clinic. We sat down and Amina shared her story with me. At 27, Amina had lived with epilepsy for more than 20 years. She had lost her family–her husband and two children had died–and now she lived with her mother.
“Our family used to be pastoralists in a remote village, but after the drought hit our region, we moved to the city. Over the past three years, my condition worsened. I spent much of my life taking pills that my mother bought for me from a private clinic, but I did not benefit from it. I used them every night yet I used to fall down at least once in a day. I was always under special care and surveillance and could not do anything for myself. I had trouble sleeping and could not control my urine, awake or asleep.”
“The arrival of your mobile team was help sent from God. There’s a big difference in the way I feel now. Today, I am capable of controlling my urine, I experience my epileptic condition only once a week or less. I sleep well and can do household chores. I am taking the medication every night, and I receive more from the clinic every month. My health is improving very well!
“Thank you for showing me kindness. I was on your lap till I regained my consciousness, and then you took me to the health facility. May God shower kindness upon you the same way you did for me. When I remember you, I pray for you and I urge you to help any person with problems when you come across them.”
Your gifts make this kind of compassionate individualised health care possible in Somalia. You are showing women like Amina that they have not been forgotten. Thank you!
Medair has been in Somalia since 2008, implementing health, nutrition, and WASH projects. We currently support 12 health facilities, including 24/7 maternity services, and we do community outreach for health, nutrition, and WASH. Our work is made possible by US Agency for International Development, Swiss Solidarity, Tear AU, World Food Programme, UNICEF, and Ferster Foundation.
This content was produced with resources gathered by Medair field and headquarters staff. The views expressed herein are those solely of Medair and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any other organisation. Names have been changed for security purposes.