Elibariki Elisante is aged 20 years old, suffering from cerebral palsy. Elibariki was admitted in the social skills program in 2006; he was only six years then and he could not stand on his own. Both his left hand and leg were completely dysfunctional.
Fast forward to 2020, Elibariki is a fully grown man, working and taking care of his single sick mum and three younger siblings. Early this year, Elibariki approached the teachers at Sibusiso, saying that he had been working in a barber shop as an assistant and he was confident he could shave very well, so, he needed help in finding a job in order to care for his siblings. No one was sure of this as shaving requires lots of keenness and concentration, but after a few trials, it was proved that he has indeed mastered the art well. To help him, Sibusiso bought a shaving machine, he comes every Wednesdays to shave the children at the center, and on any other day whenever needed. For the rest of the days, he uses the machine in his small barber shop in town to make some income to support his family. It is overwhelmingly nice to watch our child grow from not walking in to such a responsible, independent young man; indeed, as the aim of the center goes, he has been helped to help himself and everyone is very proud of what he has become.
‘I can never thank nor repay Sibusiso enough for the support they have accorded my boy since he was so little. First, I never thought he could walk, and now to imagine that he is the one feeding and taking care of me gives me so much joy. I would like to encourage other parents and the community at large to give these children an opportunity, they are capable of so many things. He has earned himself so much respect and he even shaves some of the teachers from the normal schools who did not want him there,’ said Happiness Elisante, his mother.