One of the first patients the Guiding Light Orphans (GLO) staff ever met was Augusto. After arriving in the Masindi district in Uganda in 2014 GLO Founders Jolly and Kurt Lux saw this young man from the Nyantonzi Parish confined to a wheelchair and eager to see if GLO could provide him with any help.
Truth be told, Jolly and Kurt were more on a fact-finding mission to discover local needs than they were ready to begin offering any services. They had to first meet with village elders, social workers, teachers, community leaders, local council leaders and others to listen and learn about the needs of the 26 near-by villages. But people like Augusto needed help right then. Jolly admits that at the time she thought, “We’re here, we want to help, but we don’t know what we’re doing.”
Government officials, local leaders, medical personnel, and others were more than eager to introduce the GLO Founders to the community and explain the needs and resources. Augusto became an early subject for the GLO local staff to learn from and work with.
In 2014 Augusto was under medical care for tuberculosis. He found it difficult to eat and use the restroom. His mother was the sole care giver for Augusto but she was overwhelmed. He could only get out of the wheelchair with great effort. His seizures were so severe that they could knock him out of the wheelchair. At times the chair fell on Augusto and further injured him.
In 2015 Augusto started coming to the GLO medical camps. At the camps GLO offered basic health screenings, immunizations, health education, disease prevention services, and medical referrals to hundreds of people. At one camp, a government nurse prescribed the AED (anti-epileptic drug) Carbamazepine to treat Augusto’s condition. A Village Health Team from GLO started working with Augusto and many others. When Jolly and Kurt returned to Uganda in 2016 they saw a miracle. Augusto, who had rarely been out of his wheelchair for years, stood up and began walking toward them.
Augusto had another challenge. Before GLO, Augusto had difficult speaking. By 2017 he was speaking easily and able to be his own health care advocate.
Today, Augusto is out of the wheeler and walks to the clinic without any assistance. Thanks to the entire team that believed in his potential.