Romann Steenkamp prosthesis
- By: Bokkie Botha
- Short URL: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/romann-steenkamp
My name is Bokkie Borha, 76 and I live in Prince Albert, a picturesque village in the South African Karoo. I am setting up this fundraiser for Romann Steenkamp. Romann (27) is a young man who lost his leg through a heart problem. He walks on crutches. He is an intelligent, ambitious young man who is well-deserving of support.
Funds will be used to pay a specialist and to purchase a comfortable, efficient prosthesis.
I was born in Williston in the Northern Cape Province, South Africa.
In the year 2007 I felt that my body did not feel the same anymore. When I arrived at Groote Schuur I was examined and did more tests the same day. I had to have my left heart valve replaced on the 1st of September 2007. Then I had my left leg amputated because the blood could not flow to my left leg as a consequence of my heart valve replacement and my left leg had gone dead.
The operation went well. I lay in Groote Schuur Hospital until I got better, the doctors looked after me well and then I came home. I recuperated. All my friens and teachers came to support me and give me encouragement. I did not let my experiences get me down. I got stronger and went back to Primary School where I completed Grade 9.
I then went to Zwartberg High School to start my Grade 10. I did not finish because I was still being looked after by the doctors and the school was difficult to move around because of the surfaces and double-story. I then left school in 2008 and I have been staying at home until now.
Bokkie Botha put me in contact with Caleb Swanepoel (a young man from Prince Albert, who lost a leg as a result of a shark attack). Caleb arranged for his doctor, Dr. Theo Kriel (Orthotist, Prosthetist) to talk to me. I explained my problems with the state supplied prosthesis, and also my difficulty with raising sufficient funds. Dr Kriel set out the varying costs of prosthetics.
The prosthetic which I have had from the State hurt me and also hurts my normal leg and is no longer usable.
A new prosthetic would cost about R700 000.00 ($47312.00), and prices can go up to more than R1 million ($67589.00).
I currently receive a disability pension of R1700.00 a month ($114.90). I work currently for our local Community Work Programme earning R736.00 a month for eight days a month ($49.75) and earn occasional small amounts from arranging the sale of wood, and small jobs (such as cleaning copper and brass). Relatives look after me and I live with them.
I am busy writing my life story and have been offered a place on a writing course.