“Together, let’s prevent disabilities by influencing the treatment of all children with club feet in our communities.” This was the message from the Cameroon Baptist Convention, CBC Club Foot Project as the world celebrated Club Foot Day recently. The event assembled people in Mbingo Baptist Hospital in Boyo Division of the North West Region. It was to share the goodness of developments in giving children born with feet twisted inwards or club feet a chance of receiving correction.
It was against this backdrop that the representative of the Director of the CBC Health Services, George Ndosak, sounded off frontline efforts by the institution to raise awareness and put smiles on the faces of families with club foot children. It is all about CBC Health Clinics and others that correct club foot deformities. In effect, the Cameroon Club Foot Project, a product of the CBC Health Services, provides health care in the Mbingo, Banso and Mutengene Baptist Hospitals and the Saint Joseph’s Children and Adult Home (SAJOCAH) Bafut, near Bamenda.
In just a year of inception, the project has corrected the feet of over 100 club foot victims. Club foot is a deformity and one of the most common physical disabilities affecting children. Some 200,000 new born children, with 80 per cent from developing countries, suffer musculoskeletal birth deformity each year. The project however blames ignorance of the existence of treatment services, poverty, cultural beliefs, preference for traditional treatment, lack of paternal support as some of the speed brakes hindering people from filing out for club foot correction in official and affiliate clinics. These include the Presbyterian Hospital, Kumba and the Saint John of God Hospital, Nguti.
A physiotherapist with the Mbingo Baptist Hospital, Alfred Nkwenti, encouraged local communities to embrace the project and mobilise the population to step forward with cases of club feet for treatment. He revealed that club foot was the easiest deformity to correct in children, but could lead to permanent disability if neglected. The take home message was that club foot is treatable. On the spot, three-year-old Abdoulabif from Sabongari, Nwa Subdivision in Donga Mantung Division and Mispa Chiabain from Kom, Boyo Division, all in the North West Region, were presented as models after their successful operations.
Source : Cameroon Tribune