Richard Thomas, Ibadan
The National President, Down Syndrome Foundation Nigeria, Mrs Rose Mordi has admonished governments to give attention to children with intellectual health challenges by establishing facilities that will provide support for them in order to lead a peaceful life.
Mordi gave the admonition on Thursday during an awareness programme of the foundation, with the theme; ‘Connect’, held at Pastoral Institute, Ibadan.
According to her, the programme became imperative in order to create more awareness for parents to give attention to children affected with Down Syndrome.
She said parents in the past used to stigmatize and lock up children who have such health challenges, hence, reason for the awareness programme to encourage parents to show love to them whenever they discover that they have such health challenges.
“We still have a long way to go, that is why we are here in Ibadan to replicate what we have done in Lagos. We have been able to establish the foundation with much awareness in Lagos and things are working. The same thing will happen in Ibadan soon,” she said.
The Down Syndrome boss while admonishing parents to give attention to their children in order to help them grow well, urged the government to come to their aid by establishing and putting up structures as an intervention to save the life of children with such health challenges.
In his lecture at the programme, Dr Ayo Osisanya, a senior lecturer, from the Department of Special Education at the University of Ibadan, commended the national president for her initiative, adding that it is important for people to see ability in the disability of people living with Down Syndrome.
According to him, it is a must that every society, agency and parents take the education of people living with Down Syndrome as a serious issue in order to have them lead a meaningful life.
He said no one created by God is without one form of disability or the order, but appealed to people to show sympathy by assisting those who have such challenge.
He said the effects of Down Syndrome include vision problem, dental problem, epilepsy, poor hearing and others.
Also, in her lecture, Mrs Bosede Adebayo, a Paediatric Cardiologist from the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan said proper care from birth often help to make children with Down Syndrome grow well.
She said this has to do with total acceptance from the parents with adequate care and love.
She however, appealed to the government to intervene by providing quality health facilities to help the society work and improve on them.