Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Court of Dreams is an Inclusive Project: Emmy’s Story

Meet Emmy Akinyi, an eight year old std. one pupil who is part of Sadili’s Court of Dreams project. She goes to Mary Rice Education Centre and lives with her father Fredrick and brother Eddy in Nairobi’s Kibera slums. Her mother lives in the village with the rest of her siblings.

Emmy was born a normal child. However, at the age of 3, she developed complications after a Polio vaccine went wrong. She got very sick after the vaccine and was admitted to hospital for several weeks. Consequently, her left arm and leg were temporarily paralysed. Thankfully she has been getting better with the passing of time. 

Her entire left side of the body still gets painful sometimes, making her unable to fully use her left arm and leg. Despite this, Emmy has not let her life be defined by her physical challenges. She considers herself a normal child and participates actively in sports in school. She is extremely jovial, and equally playful.

Emmy(right) with her brother Eddy
She goes to Sadili’s Kibera Tennis Court every day after school and every weekend to play tennis and other games. Even though she struggles with the racquet more than the rest of the children, she remains steadfast. She even participated in the Sadili 8 series tournament on 4th June 2016!

Emmy is also a bright pupil. Her father says she is the brightest in the family. In fact, last term she took second position in her class of 22 pupils. 

“When I grow up I would like to be a teacher. My favourite subject is Mathematics, and that is what I would like to teach in future.” She says.

Her father hopes that she achieves her dreams. “I will continue to pay her school fees until she gets to the university. I want my daughter to be a successful person.’’ He says.

Asked about what he thinks of the Court of Dreams project and his daughter's participation, he expresses how pleased he is. "I couldn't be more grateful to Sadili for coming up with this project. Ever since Emmy started playing at the tennis court, I have seen a lot of improvement in her. She is more fit and her self esteem has greatly improved. I'm even happier that they now have professionals to teach them life skills as they play. Even more important is that she is able to bathe and care for her hygiene herself"

Emmy, Eddy and their dad at their home in Kibera
His advice to parents with physically challenged children is ''Don’t lock them up in the house because they have physical limitations. The health benefits of regular physical activity are the same for people with and without disabilities. Let them go out and play.’’


  1. The phrase,"Disability is not inability" perfectly portrayed. May she live to achieve her lifetime goals

  2. The phrase,"Disability is not inability" perfectly portrayed. May she live to achieve her lifetime goals