Reference : V-P-AF-E-02620
Date : 11/08/2018
Country/Region : AFGHANISTAN
Caption : Herat, third district. Massoud was born disabled, due to a form of cerebral palsy. Thanks to the ICRC Physical Rehabilitation Centre, he’s now walking easily. Through the ICRC social integration programme, he learned to be a motorbike mechanic and could open his own shop, thanks to a micro credit loan. Since then, he started a family and manages to make a living.
Photographer : QUILTY, Andrew
Confidentiality level : public
Publication restrictions : publication without restrictions
Copyright : ICRC
Description : "Driving a motorbike was my dream", tells Massoud, his face highlighted with a mischievous smile. At 32, the tall and élancé man is running a motorbike repair shop in Herat. He remembers one day, when he was still a child, he had severe fever and got paralysed. He is one of the 28 870 disabled patients due to cerebral palsy registered in the ICRC Rehabilitation centres. When he was 11 years old, he started walking again, step by step, falling many times and begging his father to buy him a bicycle. He finally bought an old one after saving money from his job helping a shopkeeper. "I tried a lot, and fell down a lot", he tells laughing. The bright eyes, he adds: "My foot got stronger and I started to run after kites of children who were playing close to my house". He was 16 when he bought his first motorbike. "I started dreaming of having one when I saw my neighbour driving one. He was going to picnic, and I imagined myself doing the same, enjoying the weather on my own motorbike". He’s always been resourceful and interested in technology. "I had no fear", he laughs. "During the Taliban regime I was jobless for one year, so I started to provide electricity to my family. I tight the fan wire to the dynamo of my bicycle and I created electricity". A family’s friend advised my father to take me to the physical rehabilitation center. "At first, my foot was bent, five doctors tried to make it straight and adjust the orthosis", Massoud remembers. He started to walk easily. Thanks to the social integration programme of the ICRC, he was introduced to a motorbike mechanic. "It was a twelve months programme. I learned everything in six months. I was so passionate", he recalls. Running his own shop, he was able to make a living and managed to marry 10 years ago, he says. "I have two daughters and one son. Many members of my family could not have imagined I would be so lucky in life", he smiles.
Original material : digital
Resolution : 8256x5504
Orientation : landscape
Colour/B&W : colour