|Free from TB brings joy into the family|
It had been two months since 17-year-old Dede had a prolonged cough. Sometimes the coughing came with a high fever and excessive sweating that he had to change shirts every now and then. He lost five kilograms and school was no longer a routine.
Juleha, Dedeís mother, was concerned of her sonís serious condition, but she knew what to do.
Juleha suspected that Dede had Tuberculosis (TB) because she had just recovered from it two years ago and the symptoms were similar. Fortunately when Juleha and her husband Ismanto came to HOPEís clinic two years ago, she received an intensive care and free medication until she fully recovered from TB.
November 2011 was Dedeís turn. Juleha rushed to HOPEís clinic on Jl. Wayang for Dede to have a thorough checkup, from saliva (sputum) to x-rays. Juleha was right; Dede had TB.
Just like how Juleha was treated, Dede received regular treatments at HOPEís clinic and took his medication everyday. In May 2012, Dede fully recovered from TB.
Dedeís family is an accurate portrait of the poverty in Jakarta. Together with his parents and three siblings, Dede lives in a simple house with wooden walls and gypsum separators. Their residence in the populated Tanah Merah, Tanjung Priok, is far from the decent standard for a healthy, livable house.
Moreover, Ismanto only works as a security guard at Yayasan Sekolah Himmata, a social institution that operates in education and guidance for the homeless children you see on the streets. Here in Himmata, Dede participated in paket C, a program equivalent to high school. The institution itself is struggling financially so it isnít hard to believe that Ismantoís pays could sometimes face delays. For Juleha, who works as the schoolís caretaker, only receives Rp 150.000 per month.
Nevertheless, Dedeís family stays optimistic in life. For them, there is always a way out, including when Dede and Juleha had TB. They are grateful for life regardless their poverty, especially Dede, who managed to continue to the next grade in school.
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