Chiamaka Dilo says she faces discrimination in her work

A 23-year-old barber, Chiamaka Dilo, has told the BBC that she faces discrimination as a woman who caters to autistic children, and that people question why a “pretty” woman like her would want to take on the job she has.

“They scare me with their comments. They say I may end up having an autistic child,” but “I’m not deterred”, the microbiology student from the south-eastern Anambra State told BBC News Pidgin.

Autistic people in Nigeria are usually in dire need of help.

Ms Dilo goes to rural areas in search of people with special needs in need of haircuts and clean shaves.

“Since I discovered I could barb I decided to do it for free for those that cannot afford it. But I found that autistic people are either abandoned or left to suffer ” she said.

What hurts her most is when she sees some of the children have been hurt. “They injure themselves… they use their hands to tear their body because they don’t know what they’re doing,” she said.