Albinism is a genetic condition affecting 10 times more people in Africa than in the UK.
Lacking melanin pigment in their skin, people with albinism in East Africa are highly vulnerable to the sun and many die in childhood from skin cancer.
Without protection, almost all will die before reaching 40 years of age.
As if that weren’t enough, people with albinism face another deadly threat. The widespread belief that their body parts can bring great wealth means that their limbs, hair and nails are in high demand by witch doctors and their clients. Superstition and misunderstanding also cause children with albinism to be left out or bullied in school and to feel lonely in their communities.
Facing early death from skin cancer, persecution for their body parts, isolation, neglect and lack of opportunity, the challenges faced by people with albinism in Africa are profound and shocking.
But there is hope. In Uganda, Advantage Africa works in partnership with SNUPA to support people with albinism to keep safe from skin cancer by providing high SPF sunscreen and lip balm, wide brimmed hats, long-sleeved clothing, regular skin checks and surgery. We train teachers and work with communities and national media to debunk the myths, challenge the witch doctors and change the attitudes that cause people to be stigmatised and persecuted.
Things are starting to change for the better, but there is much more to do. We urgently need your help to ensure that many more people with albinism can look forward to full lives, free from fear. Will you make a donation towards this life-saving work today?
Thank you for your generous support.