By Taniya Dutta
A little girl is desperately waiting for a life-saving surgery after her head was left bent at a 90-degree angle.
Afsheen Kumbar, 11, has been living in constant pain because of a muscular disorder that has bent her neck and her head hanging.
She cannot keep her head upright and has to walk, eat and sleep with her head bent on her left side.
The young girl from Mithi in Pakistan’s Sindh province needs help to eat and use the toilet.
Her restricted life means she cannot go to school and has to rely on her widowed mother Jameelan, 52, and elder brother Mohammad Yaqoob Kumbar, 27.
Yaqoob said: “We are worried for her future.
“We do not know what will happen to her.
“We are anxious that if she is left untreated, she could develop some other disease.”
Afsheen was born a normal baby like her six other siblings but her life changed after she reached the age of eight months.
She fell on ground while playing outside the house and her neck got hurt. Her parents ignored her condition initially and due to lack of money, took her to a local faith healer but her condition never improved.
As she grew older, her problems became complicated.
After Afsheen’s story went viral two years ago, she was promised help from a prominent female leader for sponsoring a surgery.
Afsheen was taken to Agha Khan University Hospital in Karachi in February last year for medical examinations before a possible surgery. However, due to a marriage in the family, the planned surgery was delayed.
Her brother Yaqoob said that after the gap, did not answer his calls shelving the impending surgery.
Yakoob said: “The doctors at the Agha Khan Hospital performed all the tests.
“They told us there is 50% chance for the successful surgery and asked us to go home and think over it.
“However, after a month, the leader who promised to sponsor for the surgery never responded to my repeated calls or connected with us.
“We did not have money to take Afsheen to hospital on our own.
“In the last one year, she has been at home. She has not seen a doctor.”
Yakoob worked at a mobile shop but because of regular travel for Afsheen’s check-ups he had to quit working.
His father Allah Jurio died last year of cancer.
The family is now run on Jameela’s wages that she makes from working as a domestic help.
Yakoob said: “I had to quit my job because I had to look after Afsheen. I was taking her to hospital but ever since, I have been jobless.
“My mother earns £60 from working at other’s homes. This is how we are making our ends meet.
“We have no money to pay for her hospital fees.
“We cannot even take her to hospital because she cannot commute by public transport and a private taxi costs £70 each journey.”
The helpless brother is now requesting good Samaritans and Pakistani government to come forward for Afsheen’s help.
“We took her to a local doctor in our city but he said only specialists can treat her.
“He advised us to take her to a foreign country!
“We have no money to take her to a different city, how will we take her to a foreign country?
“I am pleading the government and locals here to please help my sister. She needs a surgery to live a normal life.”