Mehraj is six years old. He has axonal motor polyneuropathy, a body-wide condition that damages the nerve cells, most prominently in the hands, arms, legs, and feet. As a toddler, Mehraj had difficultly coordinating and using his limbs. He would experience shooting pains, discomfort and occasional numbness in his legs and arms which made it difficult to stand and was unable to eat without help from his parents.
Chingari’s physiotherapists began working with Mehraj, creating a specialised training regimen designed to alleviate his discomfort and help him become physically self-reliant. The program has been a great success. Today, Mehraj can walk independently for distances of more than 100 metres and has progressed to tougher physical activities including supinator-pronator muscle exercises, light running on a treadmill, the balance beam, hopping, and alternate forward and backward jumping routines. He is now able to feed and clothe himself and get through his daily activities without the need for constant support from an adult.
For Mehraj, the biggest change since attending Chingari is the opportunities it has created to learn and play with other children. With the help of speech therapy, he is now communicating typically for a child his age and comes voluntarily to sit and learn in his special education classes. But thanks to his improved mobility, Mehraj’s favourite thing is to play hide and seek with the other children in his neighbourhood, running through the streets and laughing with his friends.