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Gulam’s Commitment to Raising Leprosy Awareness

Impact Stories, Nepal

Gulam Hasmad cares about people affected by leprosy. After having recovered from this disease himself, he now spends a lot of time raising awareness to help others. 

A 29-year-old from the Banke district of Nepal, Gulam had a long journey with leprosy. When he first experienced blisters and numb patches on his elbow as well as swelling in his ankle, foot and hands, no one was able to provide him with a clear diagnosis. A year passed, and further complications arose, including the loss of sensation in his foot. Gulam’s hand was also immobilized, and in his right eye he experienced lagophthalmos, an involuntary closure of the eyelid. Unfortunately, this meant Gulam was no longer able to work. As the breadwinner in his home, looking after the needs of his wife and their young children, this created a serious burden.

Gulam heard about International Nepal Fellowship’s Shining Hospital, and when he visited this PWS&D-supported project he learned that he had leprosy. He was able to access treatment, including reconstructive surgery to regain use of his hand and eye. 

Gulam’s wife and children, aged four, seven and 10, are thankful to have their father back to better health. With his leprosy treated, Gulam’s family can spend time with him at home, as he cares for and plays with them.

In Nepal, Gulam leads a self-help group that provides social support and group credit for people with skin conditions.

Building A Better Future for Others

Gulam also uses his newly regained dexterity in his work as a carpenter, through which he earns a living for himself and his family. But the transformation does not stop there. Gulam is committed to helping other people facing debilitating skin conditions become aware of the services available to them, so that they can obtain quick treatment and avoid further complications.

This hit close to home when Gulam recognized that the symptoms his mother and brother were facing could be leprosy. Knowing the difference Shining Hospital made in his life, he helped his loved ones access medical care. They were indeed diagnosed with the condition and offered help.

In his community, Gulam raises awareness about leprosy and interventions like reconstructive surgery through facilitating self-care sessions. He has formed a self-help group for those with leprosy and other disabilities, which has 20 members. Not only providing social support, Pragatisil Self-Help Group provides savings and group credit, so that members can more easily generate an income. Those involved are generous with their thanks to Gulam as they recognize his strong commitment and leadership acumen.

Support This Response

Pray for the work of Shining Hospital. Prayer 64 in the Overflowing prayer guide is for this work. 

God of strength, we pray for the staff at the Shining Hospital—

a PWS&D-supported health facility in Nepal. Be with them

as they treat severe illnesses like leprosy and tuberculosis.

Bless their work to provide vocational training so that people

living with these illnesses may have more abundant life.


Caring for those affected by leprosy is just one of the ways PWS&D is helping bring about a world with less suffering. You can support the work of Shining Hospital by making a donation to the work of PWS&D.

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INF, Nepal
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