Disabled children in Kenya deprived of their rights, decry special school teachers

Children having a meal at the Likoni School for the Visually Impaired. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Mombasa, KENYA: Teachers from special unit schools in Mombasa are urging the government to offer equal education opportunities to disabled children in Kenya, as a way of reducing the upsurge of street children in major towns.

Gladys Wambua a trained teacher in special education at the Likoni School for the Mentally Handicapped on Wednesday said by doing that it will bring sanity in all major towns.

She expressed her concern on the rising number of street children especially in the outskirts of Mombasa city saying something needs to be done to eradicate the issue.

“The number of street children especially in Mombasa is growing rapidly and I’m personally worried about the situation. The government should do something about it.” Wambua said.

The official challenged the government by pointing out that disabled children are accorded with respect in other countries while enjoying their basic rights despite the challenges they face in their daily life.

“The rights of the disabled pupils are guaranteed in foreign countries despite the challenges they face.” The teacher said.

On the other hand,  Mwalimu Ghana, the school head teacher, urged parents with mentally challenged children to accord them their due respect like any other children in the contemporary society.

The official expressed his concern that some parents have not fully endorsed their children and requested them to change the mentality.

He urged parents to cooperate with the teachers in order to overcome the challenges encountered by the children and called upon donors to visit the school to sponsor the pupils so that they can acquire education like any other lot in the community.

“Parents should co-operate with the teachers we have so that we can all overcome the challenges they face. I’m calling upon well wishers to come and visit us and if possible assist us in sponsoring them.” The headteacher said.

Hamisi Ali, a mentally handicapped child at the school urged the government to provide the necessary support they need at the school.

He pleaded with the government to provide teaching and learning aids as they are insufficient and do meet their needs.

The deserving pupil confirmed that they are congested, as the classroom is too small to accommodate the whole population which has recently raised to fifty.

Ali claimed that no local administrator or government official has visited the special unit and decried living in solace.

“Our classroom is too small to accommodate our rising number. Currently we are fifty in a single classroom. We are congested here. We have also not seen any administrator visiting our unit and we are afraid.” The concerned pupil concluded.

Likoni School for the mentally handicapped is one of the special unit schools in Mombasa County established to offer education opportunities to the underprivileged groups in Likoni Sub-County and its environs.