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Dublin: 15 °C Thursday 9 July, 2020

This malnourished 5-year-old girl had her life saved thanks to Irish donations

Charity Concern Worldwide heaped praise on the Irish public after €1.5 million was donated to its east Africa appeal.

Yasmiin when arrived at Concern clinic on March 15 and 12 weeks later after treatment Before and after treatment for young Yasmiin. Source: Concern

YASMIIN HASSAN WAS suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

The five-year-old weighed the same as an average two-year-old when she was brought to a Concern nutrition centre in Mogadishu, Somalia.

She and her family were just some of the 1.1 million Somalis forced to flee their homes due to conflict in the region.

Her mother Aamiina believed that Yasmiin would not survive, just like one of her brothers who died from his symptoms before they reached the clinic.

Yasmiin (5) when she weighed just 12.5kg in March being treated by Hashim Jelle at a Concern Worldwide centre in Mogadishu Source: Kieran McConville/Concern Worldwide

After 12 weeks of treatment in the centre, however, the girl made a full recovery and Concern remains in contact with her regularly to check how she’s getting on.

Concern’s regional director Carol Morgan said that “life and joy returned to her eyes” over the course of her treatment.

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“She increased her weight from 12.4kg to a healthier 16.7kg – and measurements of her left upper arm also confirmed an improvement to her health,” Morgan said. “It brings immense joy to the staff when you see the recovery of children we care for like Yasmiin. The staff know they saved that child’s life.

It is truly heart breaking to see any child malnourished. You see an emptiness and loss of happiness in their eyes. They stare ahead at nothing, not focusing on anything. They don’t play and have no energy – so it is such a relief to see them recover.

Morgan said that the help of the Irish public was invaluable in its activities this year in east Africa.

After an appeal documenting the famine there, featuring the first images of Yasmiin, the Irish public donated €1.5 million to the appeal.

She and her team thanked people for the donations, as did Yasmiin’s mother Aamiina who said she is “very thankful” to the Irish public and to Concern for the “kind support” her family are receiving.

Read: Co-founder of Concern, Father Jack Finucane, dies aged 80

Read: Woman sets up fund for homeless man who bought her petrol – donations pass €300,000

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Sean Murray

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