by Mike Howorth
Mani’s life is a testament to resilience. Residing in Toongabbie with his wife and three children, he embarked on his Australian journey in 2010. However, his journey was far from ordinary; he had endured significant injuries during Sri Lanka’s civil war, which left his left leg approximately 3cm shorter than his right. This physical hardship required specialized shoes and orthotics for Mani’s day-to-day mobility.
For several years, Mani had not sought the care of a podiatrist, and he was making do with old and worn shoes and orthotics. That’s when a ray of hope entered his life in the form of a dedicated BMRSG member and volunteer, Michael Howorth, along with the financial backing of the BMRSG. Based on the circumstances of the case, BMRSG was able to fund the purchase of new shoes and orthotics for Mani
The transformation began with a visit to a podiatrist in Penrith in late May. From there, the process involved acquiring custom specialist shoes in Parramatta, a meticulous and patient process of building them up to fit Mani’s unique needs. This labor of love was completed by late August.
In mid-September, Mani underwent a casting procedure to craft the perfect orthotics tailored to his specific requirements. The journey finally reached its heartwarming conclusion on October 11th when Mani received his brand-new shoes and orthotics, ready to be worn with pride.
These shoes and orthotics were not just physical support but also a symbol of a community’s solidarity and compassion. Mani, in his gratitude, can’t help but smile as he takes each step in these custom-made shoes. His heart brims with appreciation towards the BMRSG, who stood by him every step of the way. In their support, Mani found not only better mobility but a renewed sense of hope and belonging in his new homeland.