- The Leprosy Mission Australia
- Nov 10, 2022
A tiny grocery shop in a remote village in Nepal is not the first place you might think of to see a thriving young woman.
Rupa, who is only 18, has faced many tough challenges in her life. As a young child, Rupa was diagnosed with Lymphatic Filariasis (LF), a Neglected Tropical Disease (as is leprosy). LF is a parasitic disease transmitted to humans through mosquito bites. The hospital her mother took her to said she was too young for them to help and to come back in two years. Tragically, her mother died during that time, and no one else in the family took her back for treatment.
Due to LF Rupa’s right leg swelled up. Her family said that no one would marry her as she looked so different. A female community health volunteer encouraged Rupa to join the local Self-Help Group (SHG). Her family were not interested and were against her joining. However, Rupa saw that this was a good opportunity and so she joined anyway.
Rupa has come a long way since then. She received a loan from the SHG and used it to open a shop. Starting a small business was something she had always wanted to do. Business is going well. In the evenings, Rupa sets up a carom table outside her shop. She charges a small fee per hour for people to play after work.
Rupa has also received training in understanding gender-based violence and WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene). This has increased her awareness on these matters.
Thanks to your prayers and support from your IMPACT project, Rupa is now a champion within her Self-Help Group and a board member of her cooperative. Rupa’s family are now supportive, she has a sustainable livelihood, and contributes to the growth of her community. Thanks to your prayers Rupa is now an independent young woman.
Pray for those affected by Neglected Tropical Diseases to find support and to have a voice in their villages. Pray for the IMPACT project as they educate and encourage people to participate in Self-Help Groups.
You can support others like Rupa to overcome the challenges of disease and disability by donating today. Go to https://www.leprosymission.org.au/projects/integrated-mobilisation-active-community-transformation
The Integrated Mobilisation of People for Active Community Transformation (IMPACT) Project in Nepal is supported by the Australian Government through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP) Thanks to ANCP, this project is able to help improve the well-being of people affected by leprosy, other neglected tropical diseases and disability in Nepal
Thanks to your IMPACT project disease and disability will not hold Rupa back!