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It’s no wonder women hide the signs of leprosy

Although it’s completely curable, many girls and women are too afraid to go to the doctor, because stigma means few men want a wife with leprosy. And beatings and banishment are common.

But the longer a girl hides it, the more leprosy will progress until she is disfigured and disabled by it. And shunned.

Kalpana was living on just 80p a day when she noticed that she couldn’t feel her arms and feet properly and her skin was discoloured in patches. Desperate to look after her daughter, she kept going, and didn’t tell her husband.

But he noticed the patches on her body and clicked: she had leprosy. Furious, he started to beat her. And beat her. For five years, until she was hospitalised with a broken leg. When she came home, she found he’d thrown her out, along with their four year old daughter.

Thankfully, people like you meant we could come to Kalpana’s rescue. Donations enabled us to look after her while we treated her with a six-month course of multi-drug therapy.

We are helping her to file for divorce, again thanks to kind donations. And we’ve helped her to set up a little grocery store with a small grant. Kalpana is now earing around £3 a day and is proud to be able to contribute to her parents’ household, and to send her daughter to school.

She’ll never know who exactly gave the donations that changed everything for her, but she knows now that she matters to someone.

Give £5 to change a life. Text HIDE to 70660

Woman teaching

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