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Akram's story

Akram is six years old and lives with his mother, sister, cousins and grandmother outside Kampala city centre.

The family survives by growing and selling sweet potatoes and yam vegetables on a rented piece of land. They also own a small kiosk at home which sells tomatoes, onions, curry powder and banana leaves.

When Sense International first worked with Akram, he had a number of complex needs, in addition to both sight and hearing impairments. He was unable to chew food and slept for much of the day.

Akram being carried on the back of another boy

Since our intervention, Akram has made significant progress. Through the Community Based Rehabilitation Project, Sense International has been able to provide Akram with visual and hearing assessments, as well as advice to his mother and family on developing his communication skills and abilities. An arrangement was also made for Akram’s family to meet with five other parents of children with deafblindness, who were able to share their experiences.

Today Akram can sit, stand and walk independently, can feed himself with his hand and has good toileting skills. He is encouraged to be active during the day so he can sleep well at night.

Akram is also able to communicate using objects of reference. For example, when he is hungry, he picks his plate or cup and takes it to the kitchen. He uses his sense of smell to identify his clothes, bed and family and friends.

First published: Friday 7 June 2013
Last updated: Wednesday 20 September 2017