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Rizwan's story

Mohammed and Samina were thrilled when they found out that they were expecting a baby for the first time.

But when their son Rizwan was born they quickly understood that there was a problem.

Doctors told them that their son was deafblind, that he would never see or hear like other children. At that point their dreams, hopes, aspirations for Rizwan were shattered. When they should have been celebrating the birth of their first child, Mohammed and Samina experienced stress, isolation and despair.

Although they tried hard to communicate with Rizwan, nothing seemed to work – he could not walk, or tell his parents if he was hungry or thirsty, and would stay in one place for hours at a time.

When he turned five, Rizwan was identified by Sense International and was quickly enrolled in a local deafblind education programme. Since then he has made incredible progress – he has learnt how to feed himself, he can stand and walk without support, and his communication skills are significantly improving.

It is thanks to his Sense International educator Indu Gupta, who visits him at home twice a week and who managed to teach him ways of communicating with his parents and people around him and also to take care of himself.

For Rizwan and his parents, Sense International's support has meant that the future is no longer scary or stressful but holds opportunities and many new possibilities.

First published: Friday 7 June 2013
Last updated: Thursday 12 September 2013