Act Today, No Fear Tomorrow: Sharon, concept of advocacy embded in her DNA

Act Today, No Fear Tomorrow: Sharon, concept of advocacy embded in her DNA 

by Bertille Jarry (賈貝蒂)

Sharon looks young and shy. But when it comes to landmine issue, she is not young, she is not shy; she is an activist.

Sharon’s childhood in Uganda has been stained with fire and blood by the moment she met that landmine. Her injuries were so severe that doctor had no other choice that amputated her right leg below the knee. From that day on, she had to give up her two fully functional legs and was the constraint to walk with crutches. This disability, that was her own now, was a real hardship for her and was looked by her family as a burden that requires too many attention and demands. Basic necessities weren’t easily accessible to her and, as a girl; the priorities were given to her brothers when it comes to education. Sharon was shy and didn’t feel any support to help her to proudly face the world.

Sharon eventually followed Eden sponsorship program that enables her to access to financial support for education, sanitary necessities, rehabilitation services and workshop for repairs to her prosthetic leg. It has also helped to soothe her relations with her family members, as her father now holds her in great esteem. The pride she gets from her father helped her to gain confidence and she is even considered a role model for other children by the school.

As her eighteen-year-old self, on May the 1st, Sharon left Uganda for the first time to attend the Ban Landmine platform held in Taiwan. Though she looked quite shy and unsure during the platform; when it came to telling her story, the audience was dazzled by her advocating skills, by her maturity in spite her young age, by the intensity of her speech. Sharon has this natural ability to immerse people in her speech, to say striking sentences and print them in people’s minds. “Let people advise you but not to decide for you”, that is the path she has chosen, to fight by her own in this campaign to ban landmines; in fact, even smallest voices can have the impact if they speak altogether. Because Sharon was not born with this disability, she want to advocate for people, children that are not landmine victims yet; to never let them be one in the future.

In this struggle for landmine clearance and victim assistance, Sharon is mature, Sharon is strong; Sharon is an inspiration for all the victims that are having the hard time to recover.