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Building a life around leprosy

Woman with leprosy

Starting goats: Thakni with the two young goats from which she hopes to breed more.

THAKNI is one of the hundreds of thousands of people around the world affected by leprosy.

Life in Nepal has been tough for her since she was diagnosed with the disease 14 years ago.

The Leprosy Mission Australia said that, without early treatment and constant care, leprosy was a disfiguring, disabling disease. It can shackle whole families.

Because of leprosy, Thakni developed a clawed hand that restricts her movement. 

Looking for a way forward, she joined the Govindapur Village Self Help Group, an initiative of the RECLAIM project run by The Leprosy Mission.

“Through this project, Thakni can now get reconstructive surgery to restore movement in her hands,” a spokesperson for The Leprosy Mission Australia (LMA) said.

“(But) Thakni hasn’t been able to travel to hospital yet because she’s looking after her family.”

She has a 16-year-old daughter and two younger sons – one of them two years old – to take care of.

“Her daughter is still in fourth grade because she can’t attend school; she spends most of her time working in the fields to help support the family,” the LMA spokesperson said.

“Earlier this year, Thakni took out a loan from the RECLAIM project to purchase two female goats.”

Thakni’s neighbour has a billy goat so she plans to breed from her two females and sell the young.

She hopes the extra income will allow her daughter to attend school.

The LMA spokesperson said such transformation was only possible through the support of donors.

“Your support empowers people to attain healing, dignity and life in all its fullness,” the spokesperson said.

Contact The Leprosy Mission Australia on 1800 617 679 or visit leprosymission.org.au/TLM/thakni for more information or to request a free copy of “Hope Restored: Songs for the Outcast”.

Written by: Staff writers
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