In developing countries, the inequalities people face often keep them from living life in its fullest abundance. Vulnerable people living with disabilities are often left further behind.

In some communities in Ghana, men, women and children with disabilities are further marginalized, unable to access education, health care and other opportunities to build bright futures.

Konle and her children outside their home. Photo: Presbyterian Church of Ghana

Konle is one such woman. For being born a paraplegic, Konle was punished by her parents. They refused to enrol her in school. The little girl grew up helpless and hopeless.

For Konle, life truly began the day a program officer from the PWS&D-supported Garu Community Based Rehabilitation Centre visited her community. She was enrolled in a program that teaches important life and vocational skills, allowing people with disabilities to discover their abilities.

For the first time in her life, Konle felt cared for. She was given a tricycle for mobility. With the ability to go where she wanted, Konle saw a future of hopeful possibilities.

A Future in Farming

The program at Garu also offers vocational training to encourage sustainable livelihoods. Equipped with training in farming, Konle is growing a wealth of crops and raising livestock. She earns a good income and lives happily with her husband and three children.

In another village, Zesimba was born able-bodied but contracted a bone infection in his leg as an adult, which resulted in paralysis. Later, the leg had to be amputated. Zesimba spent all his time indoors, filled with despair and believing he had nothing to offer.

Zesimba and his farm. Photo: Presbyterian Church of Ghana

Like with Konle, PWS&D support showed Zesimba what is possible with a focus on ability, rather than disability.

Through the program at Garu, Zesimba was fitted for a prosthetic and received crutches and farming support. The money he earns selling his freshly cultivated produce is enough to provide for himself and his family. Today, Zesimba praises PWS&D for helping him turn his life around.

PWS&D is working for a world that is compassionate and just—a world where no one is left behind and everyone is included in opportunities and experiences that are the right of every person.

Banner photo: Konle is trained on using her tricycle for mobility. Credit: Presbyterian Church of Ghana