Latter-Day Saints handover wheelchairs to Ghana Health Service

Accra – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has donated 270 wheelchairs to the Ghana Health Service (GHS) for onward distribution to people with physical disabilities.

The donation was spearheaded by Latter-Day Saints (LDS) Charities, a humanitarian arm of the Church after a successful completion of a three-day training programme to teach selected health professionals, how to properly prescribe and assemble wheelchairs for patients.

Elder Van Christensen, LDS Humanitarian Specialist said in the past wheelchairs were procured from existing manufacturers; however, the donated wheelchairs were manufactured by the Engineering Department of Brigham Young University to be used in active, standard and rough terrain.

Beneficiaries of the training expressed appreciation as they had acquired enough knowledge to help person with disabilities.

Mr Mark Kumi, technician from Dormaa Presbyterian Hospital said, the training has helped me to learn how to properly adjust a wheelchair to suit a particular patient. I believe the skills I have acquired will aid my daily routine at the hospital.

Ms Boni Courage Bernice, the Head of Physiotherapy Department, at the Margareth Marquart Catholic Hospital, said prior to the training she had limited knowledge on how to properly take care of wheelchairs stressing that the training programme had equipped her with the needed skills to perform her duties effectively.

Mr Elvis Kosi Alipui, the Chairman of the Accra Metro Disabled Society, expressed disappointment as most organisations disregarded section six of the Ghana Disability Act 2006.

The act says; The owner or occupier of a place to which the public has access shall provide appropriate facilities that make the place accessible to and available for use by a person with disability.

The LDS church in 2003 partnered the Ghana Federation for Disability Organisations to roll-out the programme supporting people with disability with wheelchair and subsequently a partnership agreement was signed in 2008 with the Ghana Health Service to enhance the impact of the initiative.

The global wheelchair initiative spearheaded by the Church is currently rolled-out in 189 countries as part of the Church’s efforts to improve mobility, health, educational and economic opportunities for people with physical disabilities.

LDS Charities is to relieve suffering, foster self-reliance and provide opportunities for service.

The department sponsors relief and development projects by giving assistance without regard to race, religious affiliation, or nationality.

Source: Ghana News Agency