Südafrika: Jenet B Dlamini

While some think that the disabled are a curse, some of us get life from living with them. They are God’s gift.

— Jenet B Dlamini

Jenet Dlamini was born in Kwazulu Natal in South Africa in 1967. Due to her mother’s ill health, she had to drop out of school and seek employment. At 23 she had a baby girl who was diagnosed with physical and psychological disabilities. This began Jenet’s journey of discovery into the difficulties of raising a child with disabilities. In 1998 she joined a local group of mothers with disabled children, which merged in 2001 with other small groups to form a regional advocacy body, the Disabled Action Group (DAG). Jenet manages the local daily care center.

For those who live with children with disabilities, the road is very steep. Jenet Dlamini knows this very well from first-hand experience. “Life was difficult when I had to bring my daughter up. It feels like a burden, a challenging one, especially for the poor,” she says. Out of the tough experience she had with bringing up her daughter, she founded the Thendanani Local Parents Center. This was a support group for people affected with disabilities. In 2001 this group was integrated in to a regional body called DAG. She was appointed center manager. The DAG center helps children living with disabilities and those who are affected by a disability and want to learn more about it. There is a day center that provides a hazard-free environment for the disabled. The center also provides wheel chairs and furniture for the disabled. The children are empowered to look for work opportunities in the commercial world.

Disabled Action Group (DAG)