Vicentia Frimpongma, a 10-year-old kindergarten pupil, needs Gh7,500 cedis to undergo medical treatment to correct club foot on both legs.
Vicentia, born with the condition, walks in pain and treks every day about 5 kilometers to and from school in the Abuakwa North district.
According to her mother, Hannah Agyeiwaa, she was born with the condition but due to financial constraint, they could not pursue medical treatment and since then she has been living with the condition.
“All efforts to raise money to treat her proved futile in the early years so we resigned to fate, hoping that someday we can get her treatment, so she walks normally” she said in tears.
According to her mother, sometimes the pain of walking to and from school becomes so unbearable that she misses school for a whole week or two, until such time that she is fine to trek again.
There is no school in the community where Vicentia leaves, “but she wants to go to school like her siblings, so we had no choice than to enroll her”.
There is a disability fund which is three percent deduction of the District Assembly Common Fund (DACF), to support Persons with Disability (PWDs) especially in education, purchasing of assistive devices to aid in their movement and medical needs as well as economic ventures.
However, Vicentia’s mother is not aware of such facility “nobody has ever told me of anything like that, all this year’s I have been praying for help to get money for her treatment.”
However, this year, she was taken to the Hawa Memorial Hospital at Osiem, to get her treatment to reduce her pain. The initial assessment for her treatment was estimated above Gh¢4,000.00.
Vicentia’s parents are farm labourers at Ohene-Nkwanta, a farming community near Tafo, where they live with Vicentia and her other siblings.
“I always cry whenever they buy footwears for my siblings because, I have no leg to wear some,” Vicentia said sadly in an interview with GNA.
Her class teacher, who spoke on anonymity, described Vicentia as an average pupil, but due to her condition, she often misses classes or comes to school late because of the distance and pain, which she feels whiles walking to school.
Pastor Isaac Moore, who found the girl during one of his outreach evangelisms said, “I was touched when I saw this girl walking in pain but wearing uniform and walking to school.”
He said he followed her up to the village where she lived and after the pathetic story told by her mother, he decided to make a public appeal for her.
A follow-up to the Hawa Memorial Hospital confirmed that her parents brought her there some time ago for treatment but had not returned since.
Club foot is a medical condition where a baby is born with a foot, or both turned inward with the sole of the foot facing backwards.
It’s estimated that about 820 babies are born every year with the condition in Ghana and treatment is highly successful especially when initiated early.