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Mahnaz won't stop half-way!


For many years, Mahnaz lost the use of her legs. Then she met Humanity & Inclusion (HI). Now this determined little girl is getting back on her feet again.

Mahnaz is 9 years old. At the age of 4, she became unable to walk.

Mahnaz is 9 years old. At the age of 4, she became unable to walk. | © O. Zerah / HI

As a toddler, Mahnaz loved playing games with her friends. But at the age of four, she lost the ability to walk. Since meeting HI’s teams, her life has changed for the better.

Mahnaz is nine years old. She lives with her parents and six brothers and sisters in the region of Herat. When she was four, her health deteriorated suddenly, and she could neither stand nor use her arms. At an age when most children start exploring the world around them, Mahnaz suddenly found herself unable to walk.

We had given up hope - the traditional treatments didn’t work.

Mahnaz's family has always lived in grinding poverty. Her father, a labourer, works in Gur, a faraway province, to provide for his family as best he can. He's away most of the time. Despite their difficult situation, Mahnaz's parents tried to help their daughter using traditional treatments, but nothing worked. Weary of trying, they lost hope in ever finding a solution. When HI’s mobile team in Herat region came and offered to treat Mahnaz, they accepted, without holding out much hope. 

"When HI started her treatment, we didn't think she would get any better because all the traditional treatments had failed. We didn't believe in it anymore," Mahnaz's mother explains.

Within months, Mahnaz's life had changed

Since people in Herat have almost no access to health care, HI’s mobile teams provide at-home services to vulnerable individuals, such as people with disabilities. This is how Mahnaz met HI's physiotherapists a few months ago, and since then her life has changed a lot.

Early results

Mahnaz does regular rehabilitation exercises to strengthen her muscles and improve her balance. HI has also given her orthoses and a walking frame. Equipped and determined, Mahnaz is now learning to walk and has made good progress.

We believe it now!

The girl's mother, who despaired of finding a solution, still can't believe what has happened. “Mahnaz has started to improve. She can stand up and do a few steps with her orthoses. She is walking better, and we think it’s going to work! We're so happy! "

Mahnaz dreams of going to school, running, and even playing football one day. Once she is self-reliant, her family wants to enrol her in school.

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