Albinos Long for Acceptance

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By Charles Tjatindi

WINDHOEK

As the National Albinism Week came to an end on Sunday, those living with this condition kept their eyes focused on hopes for more assistance and acceptance from fellow countrymen and women.

SINASRA (Support in Namibia of Albinism Sufferers Requiring Assistance), a voluntary welfare organization supporting albinism sufferers, takes the plight of those living with albinism seriously by lending a helping hand.

As most people living with albinism are more prone to skin cancer and other skin conditions due to the sensitivity of their skins, SINASRA has been providing much needed protective sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and suitable clothing.

One of SINASRA’s functions includes the dissemination of precautionary information to educate people with albinism on how to care for themselves and prevent skin cancer. SINASRA has been disseminating information to the general public on albinism to counter marginalization, superstition and discrimination.

Namibia is home to about 650 people living with albinism, a generic condition that affects all races.

It however occurs more in black people than whites. Due to its relatively rare prevalence, albinism is a manageable condition. If precautions against skin cancer are taken, the life span of those with albinism can be prolonged.

During the Albinism week, the Rotary Club Windhoek funded the design and printing of information brochures valued at N$25 000. The brochures will help raise awareness about albinism throughout Namibia.

A German optician, Manfred Hartel recently celebrated 10 years of business by donating 160 sunglasses to SINASRA through the Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN).

CAN also presented a cheque of N$10 000 to SINASRA as part of its annual support to the organization.

The money will be used to address the plight of albinism in Namibia.

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