SAVE UK has part-funded the Rehabilitation Centre for Children (RCFC) in Kolkata to carry out surgical operations on 19 children from war-torn Afghanistan suffering from physical disabilities. The children have been the most vulnerable section of the society due to extremely poor or non existent medical facilities. The above was arranged by CEOA, based in Kabul, Afghanistan.
SAVE is planning to support cardiac surgery on a group of Afghan children to be carried out in a private hospital in Kolkata. CEOA is currently negotiating with the hospital.
Afghanistan is the 15th least development country where thousands of people especially children die each year from preventable diseases. As per World Health Organisation 2017 data, coronary heart related deaths in Afghanistan reached 12.85% of total death. International Committee of the Red Cross estimated in 2017 that more than 2,000 children are suffering from ‘Ventricular Septal Defect’ which is commonly known as ‘Hole in Heart’ condition. “This number is a tip of iceberg as reliable number of children suffering from such condition is difficult to collect due to prevailing security environment in my country” stated Nargis Rahmat, Director of Cultural and Empowerment Organisation for Afghans (CEOA) who is working for vulnerable women, children, disabled and refuges since 2011. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund, Afghanistan remains one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a baby, a child or a mother and access to a hospital or health facility is beyond the reach of most.
The reason for number of children with this cardiac problem is complex sociocultural and economic situation in Afghanistan. World Bank suggests that poverty increased from 36% in 2011-12 to 39% in 2013-14 so majority families don’t have financial resources to access any healthcare for their children. The prevailing sociocultural practice of underage marriage and marriages with close relatives are major contributing factor. Afghanistan don’t have enough hospitals and health centres, no financial resources with Ministry of Health, limited qualified, experienced and skilled health professionals, limited and unreliable medicines and other essential supplies and unusable medical equipment make situation worse. War and lack of security and safety made condition bad to worse. The country is ranking 169 on Human Development Index.
SAVE is partnering with CEOA to support children living with congenital heart condition in Afghanistan and their families cannot afford treatment for a heart surgery. The surgery is carried out in Narayana Health Hospital, Kolkata, India with subsidise cost as there is no such health facility available in Afghanistan.
The partnership had treated 19 children so far having varying degrees of disability but need is huge and number of children are waiting for their heart treatment so that they can enjoy their childhood like any other normal children.
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SAVE-UK’s aims and objectives are to achieve the millennium development goals by alleviating poverty and promoting social opportunity.
SAVE is dedicated to do voluntary work amongst the poor and disadvantaged people of South Asian Countries.