Blind woman desperate for a home

11 June 2020 | Social Issues

ILENI NANDJATO

EKOLYANAAMBO



Due to a lack of centres for people living with disabilities in northern Namibia, those who have been rejected by their families often struggle to find suitable places to live.

One such person is a 41-year-old visually impaired woman, Frieda Elifas.

While currently relying on the kindness of a Good Samaritan who she lives with at Ekolyanaambo village near Ongwediva in the Oshana Region, the mother of three and grandmother only has until December to secure her own place to stay.



Shunned at birth

Elifas narrated how, as a baby, her mother shunned her as soon as she realised she was blind. She then grew up with her grandmother, who died in 1987.

“When my grandmother died, I moved to Engela hospital because there was a centre for people living with disabilities. In the early 2000s, the centre closed and I started renting a room at Engela, but life was tough because it was expensive,” Elifas said.

“Three years ago, a friend offered me an opportunity to take care of her place.

“However, the owner of the place has informed me that he is coming back to his house and has only given me until December to find another place to stay.”



Nowhere to go

She said there are no centres for people living with disabilities in the north and she can't go home to her mother due to their strained relationship.

Elifas added she survives on the disability grant she receives from the government, and uses it to take care of her children and grandchildren.

“I have three children, two of which go to school, and two grandchildren. I am staying with one of the children, one is staying with my mother while my firstborn, who is 21, is staying on her own with her two children,” she said.



Cry for help

She called on anyone with a vacant piece of land to assist her to build her own home so that she can raise her children.

“I do not sleep because of the situation my children are in,” she said.

“I know land is very expensive and I only depend on my monthly social grant, but we can always negotiate because I have saved up some money,” Elifas added.

She can be contacted on 081 815 6348.

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