From the start, Child-Help has in each project brought together parents, children and adults with spina bifida and hydrocephalus in self-help groups. These are guided by our partners. Self-help groups have an important supportive function towards peers. Many of these groups have reached the stage to work independently. Some are already registered as a local NGO. In addition to peer support they advocate for the right to life and treatment of their children. They engage themselves for an inclusive society, proper education, and employment. Various mothers, and adults with the disability, are working as paid staff in the projects. Mothers turn out to be the best trainers. Child-Help assists these self-help groups with training and coaching. Child-Help itself has after all been developed by a self-help group for spina bifida and hydrocephalus.
For example, in Kenya the self-help group SHAK already consists of 16 branches and is registered nationally. With the support of Child-Help they now run a guesthouse near the Kijabe hospital. In Tanzania there are now 10 branches and the self-help group has made it possible that their children are being treated at the national hospital.