Shane Manohara Rajapasha – An SOS Youth, on his Journey to be an Artist!

A story about Discrimination




Fadumo a patient with disability has faced discrimination and neglect for many years. Her paternal relatives some of whom have stable incomes have completely abandoned her and would have nothing to do with her even when she pays them a visit. She is shunned like a leper.  Nobody among her paternal relatives wants to even great her during her visits but her step mother was always there for her. SOS Hospital was the place for her when she needed healthcare most helping to save her life and that of the baby. Now Fadumo is a proud mother of a baby boy, thanks to SOS Hospital.

The story of Malyun (not her real name), 26 years of age is a painful and heart rending one with one hardship after another. Born to a polygamous family of 13 where she is the 11th child, she grew up in rural nomadic village in Adado. At the age of four years her limbs became paralyzed due an illness suspected to be polio and shortly thereafter both parents died. Malyun was then moved to Mogadishu and brought up by her step mother who lives in Deynille district in Mogadishu.

Like any other woman Malyun desired to have a family and she was in a relationship with a man but after few months of friendship this man made a strange proposition to her which she accepted. He suggested to her that he had a brother living in their rural village who needed a wife and he could arrange for the marriage if she agreed, a practice common among the Somalis. She made a decision to give it a try and before long she was transported to the rural village and the so called marriage consummated. Malyun reports that there was never a marriage literally. She says ‘I was just taken there and nothing like a house, marriage ceremony or even celebration’’. She soon realized the whole thing was a deception. ‘’it was like a bad dream’’. She said

The supposed husband was a man who was afflicted with mental illness and not fit enough to care for a family. She says ‘’ he himself depends on his brother for a living and I too was just there. The mad man did not even know that he now has a wife who needed love, care, clothing, life, shelter, food and all the other things other women have’’. Malyun reveals that those were worst moments of her life ‘’a bad joke or bad dream but yet this was real’’ she quipped. She became pregnant and sickly too but for her husband she says ’ it did not mean anything at all’’

Life became so miserable and Malyun could not bear anymore and so she requested help from the man’s brother for transport to Mogadishu but he would always tell her that he has no bus fare. Despite her advanced pregnancy, ill health and disability Malyun made a decision to walk to the nearest village which was so many miles away. Here she met good people who paid her bus fare to Mogadishu.

In Mogadishu, her step mother received her well and gave whatever care she could as she has always done but the pregnancy had reached term and labour pains started. The family could not afford private hospital but they always knew that SOS Hospital was there for them. The step mother told her ‘’ even my own children were born in SOS Hospital. The staff there are kind and caring and I will take you there’’

At the hospital, the doctors and nurses assessed her condition and she was informed that she could not deliver normally and that she will have to undergo an operation to remove the baby. She wasted no time giving consent to the doctors and the operation went smoothly resulting in bouncing baby boy. Both mother and baby had happy outcomes. “Since my childhood I was a victim. I didn’t get education, treatment when I was sick or respect.  People treat me like I am nothing and they want to take advantage of me because of my disability and although I am disabled, mentally I am fit.  I can understand & feel. Thank God SOS Hospital and staff wiped away my tears and am now very happy. Thank you all staff for working hard to save my life and that of my baby”.  Said Malyun.

As after care, Malyun is enrolled in maternal child health & nutrition (MCHN) program to prevent malnutrition and ill health and follow up immunizations.


Malyun staying in SOS Hospital wards