No longer feared in his community

By: effect:hope staff

Kamasa is a 50-year-old miner and father from a rural community in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

One day he noticed strange nodules (growths) on his face and ears. He sought help from a traditional healer, but it was ineffective. Over time, the nodules worsened and his face and legs began to swell.

"Everyone ran away from me because no one knew what I had," says Kamasa. "Even within my family, I wasn't accepted."

While at the market one day, he met a community health worker who suspected he had leprosy. Kamasa wasn't convinced, but his wife urged him to get checked out. A nurse confirmed the diagnosis.

"I started crying because I saw how my symptoms could get worse - limb amputations, ulcers, and rejection from everybody," he says. "It was difficult to accept that I had leprosy."

The nurse referred Kamasa to our program. Our partner helped him access Multi-Drug Therapy (the cure for leprosy) and Kamasa now hopes to secure a loan to earn an income at the market.

"Now I am happy and satisfied because the treatment is working and a loan will help me take care of my family properly," says Kamasa. "The people of my village have also changed how they look at me because my face and legs have returned to normal.

"If I came across someone with similar symptoms, I would tell them to follow the treatment correctly. Leprosy is a disease that is curable."

Help us Stop Leprosy!

  • Conduct research on the transmission of leprosy. 
  • Discover better diagnosis and treatment methods. 
  • Train and provide a research-friendly environment for health care workers who have direct experience with leprosy.
  • Strengthen the local public health systems in the countries where we operate. 
  • Treat and care for leprosy patients.
  • End stigma and isolation.
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