"We just want him to be happy and to socialise with other kids every day. We love our boy so much."

Deo is two years old and lives with his family in rural Tanzania. He was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when he was a baby - a condition his parents didn't know or understand...

Having cerebral palsy meant Deo was unable to sit up on his own. He had to be held and carried by his parents or propped up in the corner of the room to keep him upright. Without any knowledge of Deo's disability, his parents struggled to communicate with their son and were concerned that his posture was having an impact on his breathing. They were not sure they were caring for him in the best way possible, and they were scared for his future.

To make matter worse, stigma and discrimination against disabled people remain rife in Tanzania. Deo and his family were ostracised from the local community, making them feel isolated and lonely. They stopped going out in public as much as they used to - they were reluctant to leave the house in case they were taunted by the neighbours.

 In our community, if people see you having a child with disability they can call you different names.

As time went on, Deo's parents felt more hopeless and alone. They became increasingly worried about money too - their modest income was quickly absorbed by Deo's medical and transport bills. Without support, they did not know how they would cope.

But last year, they met staff from Motivation and attended a course for parents and carers of children with cerebral palsy. Their lives changed forever.

The course provided them with information about how to keep Deo healthy and support his development. It taught them about disability rights, so they are armed with the knowledge they need to defend his rights and challenge negative attitudes.

It also gave them the crucial opportunity to meet other families in similar situations and helped them feel like part of a community again.

With their new-found confidence, they no longer hide him away; Deo goes to the shop with his mother and the whole family go out together each Sunday.

Since the training, Deo and his family have gone from strength to strength.

Deo has been fitted with our Moti Start supportive seat which is designed specially for children with complex needs. It helps him sit upright so he can breathe and communicate more easily, and features a tray table to help with meal times and play.

For his parents, the highlight has been seeing Deo play with toys and interact with his siblings - both things he couldn't do before. Now, the family is looking forward to the day he starts school.

"The training opened our minds – we feel good about our son!" his father told us. "We just want him to be happy and to socialise with other kids every day. We love our boy so much."

Support Motivation

For children like Deo, sitting upright is a crucial part of healthy development. Our Moti Start supportive seat has been designed with this is mind, providing the postural support that gives children the best start in life. These vital seats cost just £70 each.

You can change a life like Deo's by supporting Motivation today.

*Deo's name has been changed to protect his privacy.