24 July 2005 – Childhood, we tell ourselves, should be that blissful state of innocence and joy, but this is often not the case for children who are disabled. I learned this first-hand on my voyage of discovery, travelling to visit organisations working with the disabled, and in particular with children. In so many places, I found that to be a disabled child is to live in a gray zone – a place of neglect, despair, and isolation. Branded as the “cursed” one, punishment for bad karma in a previous life, a disabled child is destined to carry the burden of nature’s cruel dispensation the rest of his or her life. But great misery also moves some people to great service, and in the many organisations I visited, I found hope too, and a humanity reaffirmed by the dedication of those who work there. This is my recollection of my journey, but it is also their story.