APLSCD Member Writes on Sickle Cell Challenges in Anambra State

sickle cell victims during thanksgiving

Sickle  cell anemia the grim reaper and life terminator on its victims has been a strange bed fellow in the lives of innocent child by share ignorance of parents and in some cases from stupid love romance(s) that shoots out the tummy and subsequent child birth. This scourge as deadly as it is, is yet to be expunged nor eliminated even in this 21st century. Good enough it is gratifying to note that some breakthroughs has been made in finding a cure  to the disease; vis- the bone marrow and the stem cells transplant, coupled with some preventive palliative  drugs to cushion up.
Good gracious for the findings, but still not yet affordable for the victims to access. In other words it is yet Uhuru. Notwithstanding the above discoveries, the only effective solution on the ground at the movement is the advocacy and the sensitization campaign been carried out within the nooks and cranny of Anambra state and beyond by the founder and the co-ordinator of Association of People Living with Sickle Cell Disorder- in the person of Aisha Maureen Edward, the Florence Nightingale and Mother Theresa of our time.
Florence Nightingale -( the lady with the lamp) was the foundational philosopher of modern nursing, statistician and social reformer and Agnes Bojaxhu popularly known as Mother Theresa- the saint of the gutters would be likened to Aisha Edward whose passion is to search and bring out the sicklers who are hiding from the social stigma to give them succour and hope. Edward who even as a victim, combs and hops around to locate victims of the disease, revamp and renew their mind set and of course, give them a life line of hope for living. Her desire to nurse and care for these weak victims is what I call Agape love in practice. Edward a young, bold and unassuming woman is ducal in conduct as in bearing. Her leadership qualities is sinquanon, an open door style, transplant and democratic in setting.
The desire to curb and eliminate sickle cell disease in our society is indeed a herculean task that needs a wide crusade to accomplish which again, needs everyone’s involvement for greater result. As sickle cell victims needs support and empathy to carry on and not sympathy. Just as Mother Theresa said while receiving the Nobel peace prize on December 11, 1979 in Oslo Norway in her lecture and I quote “ it is not enough for us to say that I love God, but I do not love my neighbor” in this regard, we now  make a  clarion call to help and assist the sicklers to live a better, healthy and longer life. In fact in this crusade of reducing and eliminating sickle cell in our society. Edward is dealing with the poor, the sick, the dying, beggars and street children some of which are ignorant of their health challenges.
Therefore my dear parents, guardians, brothers and sisters and those with compassion and heart of gold to lend us a helping hand to carry this cross which provenance has bestowed on us, for
A bell’s is not a bell till you ring it,
A song is not a song till you sing it
A rubber band is not effective till you stretch  it
Love in your heart is not put there to stay
Love isn’t love till you give it away.
Therefore as I conclude, show love  to our Health Challenged (Genetics) brothers and sisters and don’t see them as invalid which they are not, for in the words of Jesse Jackson, An American Civil right activist- “ Never look down on anybody unless you are helping him up” Celebrate the Children Day with APLSCD.

Ifeanyi Anigbogu
Abagana in NJIKOKA LGA