School Sisters of Notre Dame – Africa

Transforming the World through Education

Nsawam Orthopedic Training Center

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This morning I went down to the Orthopedic Training Center where S. Liz works. It was begun by the Divine Word Missionaries in 1961. Brother Tarcisius was the founder and is still the director. Sister Liz is the co-director. The center serves both adults and children who have orthopedic disabilities. Many of the adults are amputees either from accidents or from diabetes. Many of the chlldren may be bow-legged or have birth defects or also be amputees.

Prosthetics, calipers, splints, special shoes are all crafted on site and fitted individually. There is an extensive workshop for this.

Training in using the prosthetics, exercise programs and wound care are all part of the training that is needed for a person to be successful in becoming independent. Adults and children who live at the center while they are getting rehabilitated have dorms, meal preparation, etc. Some of the children go out to school while others (usually small ones) have classes on site.

The stories of some of the children are chilling and heart-breaking. Some of the children who are born with a disability are regularly beaten and even abandoned by parents. All of them who make their way to OTC find loving welcome. Who knows the long term effect of the abuse or the mitigating nature of the love from the center. But every effort is made to help the children in whatever ways are needed. In the weeks after I return I will try to tell some of the stories. In the meantime here are a few pictures of the Center.

Going home!  Today was the day that this lovely woman was going home and she was dressed for the occasion!

Going home! Today was the day that this lovely woman was going home and she was dressed for the occasion!

This little one was happily distracted while S. Liz put the little braces on his feet!

This little one was happily distracted while S. Liz put the little braces on his feet!

This little guy was fast even with his feet braced together!!

This little guy was fast even with his feet braced together!!

Some of the children wanting to get in the pictures.  No diability in that realm!

Some of the children wanting to get in the pictures. No diability in that realm!

The base of the statue says "My disablility is my cross but my cross is my only support."

The base of the statue says “My disablility is my cross but my cross is my only support.”

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2 thoughts on “Nsawam Orthopedic Training Center

  1. Thanks, Kathy, for sharing. Very touching and a great ministry!

  2. I love following your journals. Thanks for letting us learn about other parts of our world community. Let them know that they are in my prayers way back here in your hometown of Affton.

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