Moynul's struggle with leprosy and depression

By: effect:hope staff

Moynul, a young father and rickshaw driver in Bangladesh, suffered for months with leprosy before he was diagnosed.

He spent around CA$416 visiting several village doctors. Eventually, one recognized his disease as leprosy and sent him to our partner organization, whom you support.

He received the cure for leprosy, Multidrug Therapy, but unfortunately experienced painful type 2 reactions, a complication of lepromatous leprosy.

Moynul feels depressed that he can't provide for his family“My family couldn’t eat when I had these reactions.” Moynul tells us. “I was suffering from severe pain all over my body. I couldn’t sleep.”

Since he couldn't work, he sold his rickshaw. As a driver, he earned CA$3 a day, though some of that money went toward paying back the loan to purchase it. Now, he wondered how he would provide for his wife and 9-year-old daughter.

His wife started working at another household to earn a small income, borrowed her cousin's sewing machine to make money repairing fishing nets, and even took on day laboring tasks, such as digging by the side of the road.

"Sometimes, neighbours give us rice to help us out," says Moynul. “I’ve suffered a lot. I have no income, and I can’t even manage to give my wife and daughter meals twice a day. At night I cry and cry as I have no ability to do anything.”

Our partner staff have done the following to help Moynul’s family:

  • Delivered emergency food support
  • Visited and had regular counselling sessions with them
  • Provided a start-up loan of 3,000 taka (CA$48) to help him start a betel nut business.
  • Advocated on behalf of people affected by neglected tropical diseases like leprosy, helping to remove the stigma and discrimination
  • Provided specialized footwear to Moynul
  • Ensuring Moynul has access to the vitamins and medicine he needs 

Moynul currently has slight clawing in both hands and has lost some feeling in his feet. His parents, who live across the road from his family, help with the betel nut stall when he isn’t feeling well. He still worries about providing for his family, and our partner continues to meet with him. (Photos: Tom Bradley)

Neglected tropical diseases like leprosy take a severe toll on mental health. Most live in poverty and face challenges that seem insurmountable at times. Please give today. Your gifts bring hope and healing.

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