I saw Christian as he lives 150 meters away from where I live.
He had a normal birth until after one year when he contracted Polio and his legs were growing abnormally. The family noticed but could do nothing due to poverty.
The essential thing that the family had to get busy with, was to find the means for their daily food. Christian belongs to a family that has six children and four have moved away leaving Christian and his older brother and sister at home. He was never able to see how wonderful the world is because he is kept inside their house because of his situation.
The government here was not able to help and the right of education, the right to disabled benefits and the right to play and experience of a healthy child.
Two years ago his mother died due to sickness leaving his father working for the family needs. The children were not able to afford schooling.
Christian is a very happy smiling child. I saw him smiling when a person touches him and he enjoyed it when someone is visiting him. I really felt for him. I felt happy because of his smiles but sad because of the lack of almost everything that he should have had. His father is the one working for them to survive and to support Christian also. They live in a very small wooden room that almost sleeps on the ground. No proper rest (bath) room, a house that can be destroyed easily by a small earthquake.
At six years old, Christian badly needs a wheelchair to give him mobility and independence. He is very resilient and longs to see the outside world. He cannot walk, that is why he needs the wheelchair and the family have promised that they will bring him out and let him feel and see the sunshine and be able to feel the fresh air and see the people around. When the chair is given, I believe it will be the first time a young person is a beneficiary here in our Barongay (a district) of WHEELCHAIRS FOR THE WORLD and Christian will be an eye-opener to people that there is a chance and the right to live normally.
In a rural area such as ours the disabled are left to live as best they can and nothing is expected of them to achieve their potential as a human being. I am sure people will change the way they see and think of those people with disability when seeing Christian outside enjoying life.
This will make a big impact to normal Filipinos and I am sure many will be moved and touched by his life story. On behalf of Christian I thank those of you that have contributed to the cost of this wonderful provision.
Report by Eduardo Radaza Jr. (Project Director for Philippines)