Silve, Côte d’Ivoire  

Silve is a confident woman in her 20s from northern Côte d’Ivoire. A few years ago she started to feel intense pain in her hands.

“I went to a traditional healer, who boiled leaves in water and then put my fingers into it. He did this for a year, but there was no recovery.” 

Fortunately, a doctor at a local clinic told her about our partner hospital. When she finally arrived, Silve learned that she had leprosy. But thanks to your support, her leprosy was cured after six months of multi-drug therapy (MDT), a combination of three antibiotics.

Your generous gifts fund hospitals like this around the world, providing the cure to people who otherwise have only ineffective local remedies. 

Silve has remained at the hospital to receive care for wounds on her fingers and an ulcer on her big toe. Leprosy bacteria attack nerve endings and destroy the body’s ability to feel pain and injury. Without feeling pain, people injure themselves and the injuries can become infected. 

Although her leg was also amputated during this time due to diabetes, Silve has remained optimistic and makes plans for when she can return home. 

“I’m not sad or desperate. I just hope everything will get better, that I will be independent and can learn things. Sometimes people say they don’t want to live, but I like being positive. Maybe one day I will have a family.”

Often, people affected by leprosy and related diseases become depressed due to new disability, the rejection they experience from their families, or stigma in their communities. Fortunately for Silve, her family and friends have been supportive, making it easier for her to be confident about the future. She’s ready to return home, see her family, and begin the next chapter of her life. 

“I’m now just waiting for doctors to tell me I’m okay to go home. I don’t have a problem going back with this amputation. It’s up to God what will happen. I will be friendly to everyone, but if people want to laugh at me, I’ll just ignore them.”

Thanks to your faithful partnership, this confident young woman is able to look forward to her future. Thank you for supporting people like Silve, making it possible for them to get the cure for leprosy and continue lives of dignity and hope!