In spring 2023 we partnered with another NGO. Their local staff were running a centre in the old city for children with learning disabilities.
They wanted to integrate children with physical disabilities and asked our physical therapist (PT) and our occupational therapist (OT) to work specifically with these children.

Over the course of a few weeks we taught their staff about basic Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy principles and were even able to do a few home visits, visiting the families together with the local staff.

During one of the home visits two local staff members took our PT and OT to the home of Bassam*. He was severely physically and mentally disabled, and his mother had left when he was young. Bassam, 13, had stopped coming to the centre and we wanted to find out why.

After greeting him, we got him out of his bed and set him on a chair, but it took both of us to keep him seated in his chair as he started to fall backwards. My teammate suggested that he needed a “truth-boost”, so I knelt next to him, and looked him into the eyes. His stare was
empty, hopeless.

“Bassam, I know you have been disappointed by people. But I want you to know that God will never forsake you. He sees you and he loves you,” I said.

Immediately, the boy’s posture improved as he straightened his back and started supporting himself. In what appeared to have been a major shift, we could let him go and watch him sit on his own. The words of truth had an immediate, tangible impact.

*Name changed