The Kenya Scout Association announced that it has launched the first scout unit for children with cerebral palsy in Kenya. The unit was launched in partnership with the Cerebral Palsy Society of Kenya (CPSK).
The unit was launched at the CPSK secretariat in Donholm, Nairobi. Dorothy Wanjiru, President and Co-Founder of CPSK, said, “This is an important milestone for the CPSK team, living with cerebral palsy does not make anyone an inferior human being. Our children who join the Scout movement today are part of the community and inclusiveness is the hallmark of the human race in this 21st century.
Kenya Boy Scout Sub-County Commissioner Embakasi West said: “We have jumped at the opportunity to include children with cerebral palsy in the scout fraternity, we are striving to ensure that all children are welcome. feel accepted and, through this initiative, our children in the Boy Scout unit will learn inclusiveness and be advocates of outreach among their peers, this is a great way to teach our children what they need to do. engage and support each other, regardless of their background or state of health. ”
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a medical condition that affects muscle tone, movement, and motor skills. It hinders the body’s ability to move in a coordinated and focused manner. CP is often caused by brain damage that occurs before or during the birth of a baby, or during the first 3 to 5 years of a child’s life. 7 out of 10 cases of cerebral palsy are under the age of 12 and it is the most common physical disability in childhood. The condition can come with, learning, hearing, speech, epilepsy among other impairments. It is estimated that three in every 100 births have cerebral palsy. In Kenya, the government offers Ksh. 2000 cash transfer allowance per child per month but it is never regular.
CPSK is a charitable organization committed to improving the lot of children and people with cerebral palsy. The charity has over 500 members and cares for over 350 children and individuals. CPSK celebrates its 25th anniversary this year after being formed in 1994.
The CPSK Special Needs Education program ensures that learners with CP can still reach their realized potential. The CPSK special unit has currently admitted over 40 learners, while the therapy clinic receives over 120 children per month in the clinic and 70 youth / adults in the outreach program.
Insurance companies in Kenya do not cover cerebral palsy. The cost of therapy is very high, especially in private hospitals which charge up to ksh. 3,000 per session, public hospitals charge around Ksh. 400 and private therapists charge around Ksh. 1,500. In most cases, CP children require therapy three times a week.
CPSK works with like-minded partners to advocate and work towards securing specific legislation and policies that will take important steps to ensure the rights of people with CP are protected. The CPSK ensures that those with PC get national ID cards, have the right to vote, run businesses, access information, transportation, education and medical care.