Refugee Stories – Osama Shehadi
Osama Shehadi’s work in Syria
The problems we see, we treat. Now we are facing funding problems and until now we are dealing with it.
The little boy is called Najef. He has a case of lack of oxygen. It’s a medical case, not a war injury. This is a case of preterm delivery at six months, which causes a lack of oxygen and injury of the brain tissues. The brain tissues reveal this problem. Problem of movement, cognition and self-hygiene, depending on the age. He is thought to be OK in comparison with other cases of cerebral palsy. He walks, he is self-conscious, he talks… Other cases have a cognition problem, speech problems, depending on the tissues affected in the brain. It cannot be prognosticated, we deal with it.
As you know, the war in Syria caused many neurological cases, war injuries. Most of the cases we receive are neurological cases due to the war. There is a big need for a centre like this. We are willing to continue, but we are facing problems of the funding. We are renting this place and we need to pay for electricity.
We will continue with the people. The problem is not with us or the people; it’s with the responsibility, big responsibility. I think we will face a time with a very low budget, we are facing this problem. We are trying to find a solution for this, but I don’t think it’s possible. We can’t make the people pay. As you know they are poor people, refugees, they don’t have money. We opened this centre for the crisis in Syria. We are willing to help everybody medically. Since we are a medical centre [our work] doesn’t depend on the crisis. I think we will face an increasing number of cases and a lack of physical therapists, lack of staff. We are willing to help everybody, but as a personal prognosis I don’t know.
Maybe I can handle double the amount of cases I’m receiving now. Now there are about 24 cases, receiving physical therapy sessions. We can handle double the amount at the same time. I don’t think we can handle more than this with our current number of staff. We need more physical therapists, more assistants. Until now we are handling the situation.
Watch Osama Shehadi’s story here