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Big-hearted health worker raising cash to buy Kenyan boy a new wheelchair
WHEN big-hearted health worker Margaret Farman saw an 11-year-old disabled African boy lying helplessly on the ground, she knew she wanted to help.
The boy, Jonah, lives in a small hut with his mother in Lamu district near the Kenyan coast.
His father has abandoned them and Jonah needs 24-hour-a-day care. He also suffers frequent bouts of pneumonia.
“The living conditions were very bad. He was born in a local clinic and his mother was told he would never make it. She took him home, back to the bush, and he’s still going,” said Margaret, 44, of Merley.
After talking with Jonah’s mum, Margaret decided to try and raise money to buy him a wheelchair. Poole Mobility in Wimborne Road and manufacturer Karma are giving her a discount and she has been working shifts at Alderney Hospital to raise the remaining £750.
She is hoping that being able to sit up in the customised wheelchair will transform young Jonah’s life.
“He spends most of the day lying on the ground. He will be able to see around him. The chair will give him quality of life,” explained mental health support worker Margaret.
Margaret was originally from the Lamu district herself but moved to England 20 years ago after meeting her husband Richard in Kenya. The couple, who have a 10-year-old daughter, try to visit their farm in Africa every year.
Since she was a young woman, Margaret has been giving money and support to less fortunate members of the Lamu community, including paying for patients’ medicines in hospital, making sure 18 orphans are looked after and educated, educating men and women about birth control, and paying for street children to go to college so they can find work.
“They then help others. We work as a team,” she explained.
Her charity, St Margaret Life’s Hope Foundation, was set up on her behalf in Kenya in 2010.
“My grandmother was a foster parent and there were 40 of us in the house. I just want everybody to have hope like I have. Hope gives you strength,” she said.
- Anyone who wants to donate is asked to send a cheque to St Margaret Life’s Hope Foundation to Poole Mobility, Unit 3 Fleetwood Court, 431 Wimborne Road, Poole BH15 3EE.