"The driver left me on the road", Latifa, 24 year old mother and business woman from Dodoma, Tanzania
Before Latifa was left for dead in the road by a hit-and-run driver, her life was pretty normal. Married with 2 small boys she kept her home and earned a small income buying and selling clothes at the market.
After the accident, passers-by helped get her to a nearby hospital where she remained unconscious for another 7 days. By the time she woke, both of her legs had been amputated from below the knee. After a month of recovery in hospital she returned home but without prosthetics, it was almost impossible to resume her usual activities. Not long later, the family situation deteriorated and she and her husband decided to separate, so Latifa was forced to move back into her mother's home with the youngest of her two sons, sending the older one to live with her sister.
Losing both of her legs was very traumatic for Latifa. Until she came to terms with the loss of her limbs, she cried inconsolably for days. Once she overcame the grief of losing her legs, home and husband she has managed to find ways to get many of her household chores done on her stumps. If she needed to go to the market to sell clothes, she shuffled to the door and called for the motorbike taxi to come to the door and friends help her do the grocery shopping. Still, many people stared, she didn’t always feel safe out in public and some of her previous friends just do not come by anymore. On her meagre existence, prosthetics just wasn't an option she felt she could consider.
When the option to be sponsored for free prosthetic fittings came her way, she immediately signed up. Having legs again means she no longer needs to go through her days on her knees. She can resume care for her boys and have more options to expand her business.
Today she is a different person! The day she received her new legs, the sadness of the past few years quickly faded and she became the vibrant and chatty woman she was before. The joy of being able to walk again bubbles over in smiles, chatter and evident joy at having her previous stature restored.
Her legs were donated on September 15th, 2018 at Kagondo Hospital during a SwissLimbs training mission sponsored by Medicor Foundation