“I’ve always been careful about UXOs. However, one day my arm was suddenly snatched away from me.”
27 years old
UXO accident while working
Mai, 27 years-old, grew up in Phack-Kha village, a small rural community in the heart of Xieng Khouang Province, one of Lao PDR’s most heavily-bombed areas during the Secret War. Thanks to Mine Risk Education programmes, Mai was aware of the danger of remaining UXOs in his region. From when he was a child, he had been told not to touch any metal object found in the ground in the forest and fields. However, the risks of UXO are still very real even with high levels of awareness. In 2015, Mai had been working as a road construction technician which brought in a small salary to supplement the income generated from his work at the farm. One day, as he was digging by the road side, a UXO exploded, injuring Mai severely.
“I lost my right arm in the explosion. I had to sell most of the livestock I had raised to cover the hospital fees”, remembers Mai. “I didn’t know about prosthetic devices until the CMR-COPE Connect Mobile Clinic team came to my village in June 2016. One year after the accident, they provided me with a prosthetic arm for free. I’m hopeful I will be able to raise some goats and other animals now, and support my two children’s education.”
Watch the moment when Mai met the CMR-COPE mobile clinic team for the first time.