STRUCK DOWN OVERNIGHT
Imagine waking up with pains in your legs at age 15 and then finding you cannot walk again. This is what happened to Aida Fernando José, when she contracted polio.
And so her life changed. Although she went back to a school for a while she then left as her parents were too poor to pay, and besides, Aida herself was finding it difficult with her disability.
MAKING ENDS MEET
Now 32, Aida has four children but no husband. Despite her lack of education she has built a small business sewing and embroidering, but felt very isolated, especially as she was raising the children on her own.
A NEW RESPECT
The Aida joined the radio listening club in Alto Molocue and saw a transformation as people heard her voice on the radio and recognised her. “There is respect for me and other women, so the club does me good" she explains.
FIGHTING FOR CHANGE
Aida acknowledges that change is hard to achieve but says she has seen a turn-around through the programmes as people see that women with disabilities are equal to others.
She has also learnt a lot about HIV/AIDS. Aida says: "Before, the various lectures were never performed for women with disabilities but now the club has been created for women, yes, we begin to feel that people see us as people who also need this message". She believes that there is still much work to be done in this area, as well as domestic violence and says they are “two evils that plague our society still whose victims have been women and children in large scale”.
Aida believes that with the solidarity that exists in the women’s club, they can correct the discrimination that still persists as women unite to fight for a single cause.
Read more about POWER International and their ground-breaking radio clubs here