Did you know The Leprosy Mission is the only international organisation working with leprosy patients in Timor Leste? So your support of the ministry in this country is absolutely vital!
Face swelling... loss of sensation in his hands and feet... after several years of ill health, Joao had no idea what was happening to him. His worried wife took him to hospital... where he was diagnosed with leprosy.
It was 18 years ago when Antonio was diagnosed and treated for leprosy. But treatment came too late to save him from permanent disability. He and his wife struggled to feed and educate their 7 children.
When you have leprosy or a disability and live in poverty, your future job prospects are slim. In fact, you may lose your job because of the stigma of leprosy, or the disease may leave you unable to use your hands or walk properly. Not only that, but your children may also have trouble finishing school because your livelihood is gone and you cannot pay for books and uniforms.
Petronella’s first signs of leprosy were the patches on her skin. Like so many others, she could have tried to hide her condition. She could have ended up with deformities and disabilities, even needing amputations. As a mother of seven children, this would not just affect her own life but all her children.
Imagine you’re a child who looks a little different from the other kids. Or sounds a little different. Or you make involuntary and unusual physical movements due to cerebral palsy. Maybe you have a congenital birth defect - you were born that way…