Lais Silva, Facilitator Mother

“There is a film playing in my head, going back to when it all began. It was a very sensitive moment… it was still an open wound for us, and then we got to know ‘Juntos’.  It led to a huge change in my life and my family.  By learning and acting as a facilitator mother, Juntos enabled me to find out about so many new things and people, who will forever remain part of my story.  We had so many doubts and questions. When we met in the Juntos group, we mothers were heard and we heard each other.  It was a very important change because normally families believe that they should just listen to professional therapists.  The exchange of experiences in Juntos is incredible.  It was so good for us to be able to express ourselves at those moments!  So, Juntos changed our lives.  Today I feel like a “person”.  As I always say, Juntos is a family for us… Seeing and talking to mothers and fathers who have children with congenital zika syndrome makes me happy; those who are in the same developmental phase as my son Dudu or who are in a phase that he has already gone through, or even in a phase we believe he will attain.  This makes us really happy!  I experienced something really incredible when a mother did not believe that her son was capable of doing something and, at that moment, I remembered that my son had had the same difficulty.  I knew that that child was capable of doing it, so I used strategies that I learnt bringing up Dudu and he was able to do it!  It was so fantastic for me, among many other things, together (juntos) for ever.”

Lais Silva, Facilitator Mother (Salvador, Brazil)

“I appreciate the nutrition and feeding skills they gave us because I can see a change. He has put on some weight and my mother finds it easier to feed him because she has the skills now.” (Mother, Uganda)

“Actually, before this group, sometimes I felt alone in the world, thinking that this problem was only mine. I could not imagine that other parents were going through worse things. We can help, and we have the opportunity to interact with other children.” (Mother, Brazil)

“We had a lot of fear and used to think they were “wasted” children, but meeting other mothers has taught us a lot. Fellow mothers give us hope that our children will improve and this kept us strong.” Mother (Uganda)