Never have the words of The Leprosy Mission Prayer come so readily to my mind and lips… than on my recent visit to Nigeria.
The people you’re helping through our projects have such a positive outlook on life. Despite what life has dealt them. Without access to basic health care, they soldier on and take things in their stride.
They live in a country where attacks on villages by armed bandits are all too frequent. Family members are killed right before their eyes. Why should anyone have to put up with that? It makes me angry. It’s not fair. Yet despite that, they continue on, planning for a better future.
This was my first time to Nigeria. I visited a health clinic in Gusau. I’m so thankful that generous people like you support leprosy clinics like this one. You’re helping people affected by leprosy and disability overcome their health challenges. Unnecessary disability caused by a disease that’s curable.
But I can assure you that your support is providing them with hope for a brighter future.
Shehu who manages the clinic in Gusau was proud to show us his car. Thrilled by his achievement that ‘someone affected by leprosy can now own and drive a car’.
“In the last year we have noticed an increase in patient numbers coming with other Neglected Tropical Diseases apart from leprosy.” said Shehu. “It highlights the successful integration of this clinic into a NTDs clinic. People used to be afraid of people affected by leprosy, so did not come. This highlights the success of the awareness raising activities to promote social inclusion.”
Another gentleman commented. “Since learning ulcer care, I have seen my ulcers heal and I am more accepted in my community now. Our feet are cleaner, and the ulcers have reduced…”
My visit to Nigeria has reinforced to me what an amazing impact we are making together. Please continue praying for the clinics and for the people they serve. It is so important that we continue raising funds to help so many more needing health care support.
Again, this coming year, my church will be holding a ‘Cuppa for a Cure’ on World Leprosy Sunday. I will get a chance to share the stories of the remarkable resilience of those I met in Nigeria.
My prayer is that others will see through the eyes of our Lord and “look mercifully upon those who suffer from leprosy…”
We encourage you to hold your own World Leprosy Sunday event or ask your church to set aside some prayer time in a service from January to April next year to pray for people affected by leprosy. For prayer cards, audio/visual or bible study resources, contact us by calling 1800 LEPROSY (1800 537 767), email [email protected] or register your interest: worldleprosysunday.org.au