Life in Africa, Christian Aid Ministries

Life in Africa with blindness

Youngor Zayzay’s life in Africa has been anything but easy. Youngor Zayzay’s mother died soon after she was born in Liberia, West Africa. She was raised by her grandmother. Youngor met her father for the first time when he came to grieve her grandmother’s death. Later, her once-absent father became involved enough in her life to give her away in marriage to a taxi driver.

Youngor’s married life also brought trials. She and her husband had six children, but two of them passed away. Later, when her half sister came to visit, Youngor’s husband took her as a second wife.

Now, toward the end of her life, Youngor lives with her youngest daughter in a house built with wood and scrap pieces of zinc, the cheapest house you can build in Liberia. She does not know where her three other children live.

Ninety-year-old Youngor also faces another obstacle: blindness. One day while working in her garden, Youngor suddenly could not see anymore. Frantically, she called to her daugh­ter for help. They went to the hospital to try to find out why Youngor had mysteriously become blind, but the doctors had no answers.

In Liberia, blindness is an all too common trial. Some people became blind from shrapnel or other hazards during Liberia’s civil war. Others’ loss of sight starts with a minor eye infection. Because medical treatment is often unavailable or unaffordable for most Liberians, this infection can lead to blindness.

The plight of the blind in Liberia is sad and lonely. They are usually viewed as liabilities or burdens. Spouses, parents, and other family members often abandon them when they lose their sight. Finding the basics such as food, shel­ter, and clothing is a heavy burden. Many resort to begging, since there are few opportunities for them to earn an income.

Funds from supporters enable the Hope-for-the-Handicapped program to reach out to blind Liberians. Your generosity helped Youngor receive a 55-pound bag of rice. This helps meet an especially critical need since the price of rice, Liberia’s staple food, has recently spiked. The rising price creates a major food crisis, especially for blind people who depend on hand-outs or begging. Thank you for making it possible to help handicapped people in Liberia and other places!

To help support the Hope for the Handicapped program, please click the button below to give a gift.