Teen with Cerebral Palsy scores big at CSEC, aspires to become a Civil Engineer

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By Isanella Patoir

A West Demerara couple, who endured many hardships as they cared for their child born with cerebral palsy, is now celebrating his success at this year’s Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations.

The 17-year-old West Demerara Secondary School, Davindra Bridgmohan also known as Davin, attained four grade ones and six grade twos in all ten of his subjects. His mother, Indira is his personal tutor.

He achieved grade ones in English A, Principles of Business, Agricultural Science and Electronic Document and Preparation Management; grade twos in Mathematics, Physics, Social Studies, Integrated Science, Industrial Technology – Electrical and Technical Drawing.

The teen lacks mobility in his arms and legs, but that did not stop him from attaining success throughout his primary and secondary school years.

Cerebral Palsy is a group of permanent mobility disorders that appear in early childhood; the signs and symptoms vary among people and over time.  Common symptoms include poor coordination, stiff and weak muscles and tremors. Some persons with cerebral palsy also experience problems with sensation, vision, hearing, swallowing, and speaking.

Davindra Bridgmohan says his mother, Indira is his personal tutor

Davin can walk with assistance and speaks well; he also does almost everything for himself.

Davin’s father, Yoganand Bridgmohan – a cane farmer – worked hard to build a home suited to Davin’s needs and to make him comfortable.

His mother spends her days caring for him and siblings –ages 14 and 6 years old.

During an interview with the News Room at his Endeavour Canal No One home, Davin attributed his success to his teachers and mother.

“I spend most of my time studying, I didn’t [go] to [any] extra lessons or anything, I just do it on my own, my teachers…everybody work with me. My mother was my personal tutor, she helped me with my homework, assignments and SBAs,” Davin said.

Davin said during the five years at the West Demerara Secondary School he was treated like any other child and was always one of the top students in his class.

In 2014 when Davin wrote the National Grade Six Assessment and gained a place at the St Joseph High School in the city, he decided to go to West Demerara Secondary, because it was more convenient for him to do so.

The aspiring Civil Engineer is seeking support to further his studies as his parents cannot afford it.

Davindra Bridgmohan (first from bottom left) with his siblings and parents, Indira and Yoganand

“I want to further my studies but right now my parents [cannot] afford it financially. I am going to study engineering, civil engineering…I am always inspired to see like machines and work with them,” Davin said.

The Bridgmohan family has sacrificed over the years to make Davin comfortable and continues to be dedicated to caring for him; Davin also assists his younger siblings with their homework and school projects.

“My relationship with my family is good, we are very cooperative and they help me out a lot; my father is my strength, my mother is my mentor and my siblings are my very best companions.”

Meanwhile, his mother said she did not expect Davin to do so well, but she is very proud and overwhelmed by his success. Even more so, Indira is happy that Davin is graduating from the same school she graduated from in 1996.

“Davin was very relaxed, he did a lot of studying yes but not to the extent that I expected him to, he does take everything light, he doesn’t make nothing worry him at all,” the mother said.

She said he is a bit of a perfectionist and always seeks to be tidy. Davin loves to listen to music and watch cricket.

The mother said it was never easy with Davin’s condition, but the family has adapted over the years.  Indira believes that parents should play their roles well and support their children.

“I think parents should be there, be their children’s role models and support them, that is what I did I wrote CXC but I never went and work, I show my dedication towards my children and home.”

Davin is thankful for the teachers and all his friends at school who supported him throughout the years, but above all, he is thankful for his family.

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