ABU DHABI // Five times a day, Sayed Hameed announces prayers from his mosque in International City. After every call, the muezzin says a silent prayer for his son.
His eldest son, 11-year-old Yousef, needs corrective surgery on his right leg, which has been deformed since birth. However, his 35-year-old Afghan father cannot afford to pay Dh60,000 for operation.
“Yousef didn’t have any accidents and doesn’t suffer from anything else. He has already had four operations on his leg but one more is needed,” said Mr Hameed, who earns about Dh4,000 a month and has no health insurance.
“He still has got a deformity in his right foot in spite of the (earlier) surgery and needs more to improve his foot.”
Yousef faces problems because of the deformity, which would be straightened with surgery. He struggles to walk short distances.
Doctors told the family the operation Yousef requires is straightforward and has a 95 per cent chance of success.
“I love playing football and I used to play a little with my friends at school, but now my leg hurts so much, especially in the morning,” says Yousef, who is in fifth grade.
“I’m not scared of the operation. I just want to get better and for my leg to stop hurting me so much. Everyday it hurts, and the doctor said the operation will make it stop hurting.”
Hisham Al Zahrani, manager of zakat and social services at Dar Al Ber, said all Yousef wants is to be able to run.
“Yousef is like every young boy – he wants to run and play with his friends but can’t. Without surgery, Yousef will not only never be able to run but he won’t be able to walk either. Above all, he is in constant pain. We hope we can raise enough donations for his surgery.”