Through Their Eyes

Doto is a young girl who attends the day center at Longuo. She is eight years old and has been attending that day center since it opened in 2009. She is a loving and curious child who greatly enjoys interacting with other children and western volunteers. Doto is very interested in new people and new games.

Doto lives with her mother and three siblings. They rent two small rooms in a multi-family home in Moshi Town. Doto’s father left the family due to Doto’s disability. Doto’s mother is a day laborer and struggles to make enough money to feed her family. Doto and her siblings often do not eat three meals a day. Doto’s mother often needs support from the church to pay the monthly rent for their home. Her mother makes far less than a dollar a day.

When Doto’s mother was pregnant with Doto, she contracted malaria. Due to the high fever that is frequently a symptom of malaria, Doto had some birth and developmental complications. Doto was initially a twin. She had a twin sister who died while her mother was giving birth. Due to the mother’s fever while Doto was in the womb, Doto experienced many seizures as a baby. She continues to experiences seizures as she grows.

Doto is very active, so when she experiences a seizure she is rarely sitting or lying down. This has caused some vicious falls to occur. Due to these regular falls, Doto is regularly in the hospital. Her mother cannot afford the hospital bills and, because she struggles to pay the bills, often she hesitates before she takes Doto to receive medical care.

Doto has had a couple of neurological checks in Dar es Salaam, but the trip is very expensive for her mother. Doto’s has been prescribed regular medication that has reduced her seizures; however, her mother cannot afford to pay for the medication. The medication costs approximately 6,000 Tanzanian Shillings per month, or about $4.00.

With the funding from the Hike 4 Healthcare, Doto will receive her monthly medication. Money will also be available for any emergency doctor visits if a nasty fall occurs after a seizure. Since the funds will come from the Hike 4 Healthcare program as opposed to coming from her family’s meager income, this will create more available funds for rent, food, and other basic needs.

This program will not only benefit Doto’s health, but it will benefit her entire family.

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