Breaking the shackles of disability.

Lilian Dibo Foundation
Posted October 5, 2020 from Cameroon
Training on ankara and beads accessories designing on MANDELA'S DAY
Training on ankara and beads accessories designing on MANDELA'S DAY (1/5)

After going through primary and secondary school with the best results, i got admitted into the University of Buea where i read accounting for 2 years before the Anglophone crisis in Cameroon broke out.

This caused a halt in my education as i had to drop out for fear if being caught by stray bullets.

Being a person with disability, it wasn't easy on me as my education was my only consultation. 

Staying at home for 2 years was a nightmare. I suffered from gross stigmatisation and marginalization. Abuse of all sorts. The society made me to believe that nothing good can come out of me because I'm disabled.

I took it as a challenge. Got enrolled in a counseling school where I was awarded Best Outstanding Student in Trauma Counseling. In 2019, i wrote a book titled LIVING WITH DISABILITY. Same 2019, i went in for MISS WHEELCHAIR ♿ CAMEROON and i was nominated FIRST RUNNER UP MISS WHEELCHAIR ♿ CAMEROON . I became a Disability Right Activist, moving from one media house to another advocating for the rights of persons with disabilities especially women and girls with disabilities. In March 2020, out of nothing i launched the LILIAN DIBO FOUNDATION whose objectives are:

-Promoting inclusion of women and girls with disabilities through vocational training particularly ankara and beads accessories designing.

-Promoting and protecting inclusive education for children with disabilities and children born from disabled parents.

-Financial and material empowerment of women and girls with disabilities through small scale businesses for independent living and sustainability.

LILIAN DIBO FOUNDATION has carried out numerous humanitarian activities for persons with disabilities and nondisabled persons. This is because we want to wipe out that high level of stereotype towards persons with disabilities.

When we heard that a person with disability was arrested in Buea Southwest Region of Cameroon, because he was not having face masks, i had to engage in teaching disabled women and girls how to sew material face masks using electric sewing machines. After teaching them for a week, we used 3 days to sew 500 face masks. On the 1st of May this year, we went to Buea and distributed it to every person with disability. Went to car parks and Buea town market distributing these face masks. Also on the 19th of that same May, we sew 512 face masks and produce 500 detergents, and distributed it in Kumba. That alone gave some level of respect for persons with disabilities as it was evident to the public that persons with disabilities can also contribute to the socio-economic affairs of a nation.

On MANDELA'S DA , LILIAN DIBO FOUNDATION carried out a free training on Ankara and beads accessories designing for persons with disabilities and nondisabled persons. As a servant leader, i did the training myself as i want to be the change i wish to see in the world.

On the 19th of September, through the support of my partner, 50 persons with disabilities were given 50 bags of rice, 5 bags of salt and 5 cartons of savon. This is to help them reduce hunger for a while.

LILIAN DIBO EYONG and LILIAN DIBO FOUNDATION is determined to go against all odds to make sure that persons with disabilities especially women and girls with disabilities have a changed mindset and fully impact their communities as active agents of change.

Total INCLUSION is the key. Nothing about u, without us.

This story was submitted in response to World Pulse Digital Ambassadors.

Comments 2

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Nini Mappo
Oct 06
Oct 06

Hello Lillian,
I feel like saying to those who said that you can't make good because of your disability:
"go dem look at dis girl, and go den eat your words!"
(I don't know any pidgin, but it sounds better with a bit of pidgin, so I made it up ha ha :) )
This is fantastic news how much good is flowing from you, not because of your disability, but in spite of it, because you are defined by purpose and passion, and not what anyone thinks about your mobility aid.
Good on you Lillian, I celebrate you!

Hello, Lilian,

You are an overcomer! I love your grit. You are a role model for women and girls with disabilities. I'm inspired just by reading your story. This is powerful: "Total INCLUSION is the key. Nothing about u, without us." So true.

Thank you for breaking your silence, owning your story, and sharing this with us. Looking forward to reading more from you, dear.