One of our first students Esther gave birth to Edith with us at Kissi in 2005. Esther was 15 years old and already pregnant when she came to Baobab. Little Edith was ‘our’ child from the beginning. She joined her mother in everything, including going to classes. Sadly, Esther disappeared with Little Edith when she was 8 months old and went to live on the streets in Accra. We found them again 1 ½ years later – Edith was under-nourished, under-developed and heavily traumatized. We looked for what help there was available but there are few facilities for therapy in Ghana. Edith developed epilepsy three years ago and Ghana is very unenlightened about this illness as well. The sick are not taken to hospital but just given pills without checking whether they are effective.
Now Edith is 12 years old. She has a younger sister Jessica who is nine years old and also lives with us. Their mother wasn’t able to care for them and so Baobab adopted them. Madam Hannah is their foster carer.
Edith needs urgent therapy. The older she gets the more isolated she becomes and it gets more difficult to reach her. We found the Child Development Foundation at Cape Coast University where they have a trainee therapist. She is now having therapy sessions and we hope we can support her into adulthood with more knowledge about her condition.
Both girls go to a good school and we hope, by guiding them into adulthood in this way, they will go on to gain employment and be able to support themselves in later life.