EUROPE/SPAIN - The plight of albinos at risk for false popular beliefs

Tuesday, 7 June 2016 healthcare  

Felipe Fernandes

Madrid (Agenzia Fides) - On June 13, we celebrate International Albinism Awareness Day and the European Day of Skin Cancer Prevention. The phenomenon of albinism penalizes and affect the daily lives of so many people. In Africa there is a superstition that drinking an 'albino potion' brings good luck and there are bounty hunters who seek them to mutilate and kill them so they can get the ingredients of the precious potion. Tanzania is the Country where there is the highest prevalence of albinos worldwide. In order to learn about the plight of these people, and to highlight the work and commitment of doctors and volunteers to improve their situation, on June 30 the first ALBINO book-exhibition will be held in Madrid which denounces, through photography, the plight of albinos in Tanzania. It is a bilingual publication, English and Spanish, and the proceeds from the sale will go to the NGO África Directo to support the project of free local production. ALBINO is a visual story on the main problem of albinos, the absence of melanin along with the lack of adequate sun protection, the cause of a skin cancer that reduces life expectancy to less than 30 years. Thanks to the photograph exhibition one can see what kind of life is led in Kabanga, a refuge where albinos can live without fear, thanks to the help of the work of a group of Spanish doctors, who for about eight years have been treating hundreds of albinos in the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Center. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 07/06/2016)