Working with PhysioNet to help the disabled in developing countries.

President Elect and Chair of Rotary in Knaresborough’s International Committee, Helen Westmancoat, was at PhysioNet’s depot at Gelsthorpe Farm, North Yorkshire recently to present a cheque for £500 to PhysioNet Chairman Mike Adams towards transport costs.

shows    President Elect and Chair of Rotary in Knaresborough’s International Committee, Helen Westmancoat (left) presents a cheque for £500 to PhysioNet Chairman Mike Adams with Anna Cottrell from Norwich Rotary Club (right) at a break in loading th

Rotary and PhysioNet working together 

to help people with disability in

 developing countries.


President Elect and Chair of Rotary in Knaresborough’s International Committee, Helen Westmancoat, was at PhysioNet’s depot at Gelsthorpe Farm, North Yorkshire recently to present a cheque for £500 to PhysioNet Chairman Mike Adams towards transport costs.

The all-volunteer Yorkshire charity, which was founded in 2005 by Knaresborough Rotarian Peter Thompson, collects and refurbishes discarded mobility and physiotherapy equipment - wheelchairs, Zimmer frames, crutches, walking sticks and redistributes it for use by disabled children and adults in developing countries. The equipment would otherwise be sent for scrap.

Bulk collections of equipment are made from the NHS, Social Service Departments, Local Education Authorities and the private sector throughout the UK. Support centres have been established in East Anglia, Lancashire, Southern England the West Country and recently (September) in Inverness.

Equipment is checked and listed at the PhysioNet depot, items are then sent in 40' containers to destinations around the world, including Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia and the Pacific.

PhysioNet gained the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in 2017. The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award given to local volunteer groups in the UK to recognise outstanding work done in their own communities. It was established in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of The Queen's coronation and is regarded as the MBE for volunteer groups.

Also present was Anna Cottrell from the Rotary Club of Norwich for whom the consignment to the Kekeli Foundation, Ho, Volta, Ghana had been arranged. Anna explained “Traditionally in Ghana, children with a disability have always been seen as ‘devil children’ to be kept hidden from society.  Bit by bit, we are helping to change that attitude but the possibilities for such children to access a proper education are more or less non-existent.  So the provision of such targeted help is absolutely ground-breaking”.              “We have built – with help from the Australian Government under Australia Aid – an Assessment and Resource Centre which will begin the process of diagnosis and treatment of the disabilities. To this end, I am charged with providing as much equipment as possible.  One of our huge needs is wheelchairs.”         “ ‘Breaking new ground’ could well be our mantra. The Centre and an Inclusive School will be used as a model in Ghana in the hope that head teachers of other schools will feel able to begin moving towards an inclusive approach themselves.  It is to our great advantage that we have the approval of Ghana Education Service”.

The consignment included Crutches, Walking sticks, Hoist frames, Hoist slings, Zimmer frames, Walkers, Wheelchairs, Beds, Books & Toys.This was the ninth consignment so far this year, previous loadings included the following.

·        6th April, 40 ft container for the Spinal Injuries Association in Suva, Fiji. The 14th consignment to Fiji since 2009. 5th May, 40 ft container for the Satya Special School in Pondicherry, India.  8th of June, 40 ft container from Exeter for the Rotary Club of Empangeni, South Africa. 15th June, 40 ft container for the Rotary Club of Harare Dawn, Zimbabwe. 13th July and on 3rd August, two 40 ft containers for the Northcliff Rotary Club, Johannesburg, South Africa. 17th August, 45 ft HGV truck the Maria Beatrice Centre in Alba Lulia, Romania. The fourth consignment to this very successful organisation. 21st September, 40 ft container for the Kloof Rotary Club in Durban, South Africa.  “Care-in-the-Community” equipment to kit out two care homes in the Durban area.

Amongst the regular volunteers helping to pack the 40 ft container were Students from nearby Queen Ethelburga’s Collegiate.

For more information about PhysioNet visit PhysioNet.org.uk 

Photograph shows    President Elect and Chair of Rotary in Knaresborough’s International Committee, Helen Westmancoat (left) presents a cheque for £500 to PhysioNet Chairman Mike Adams with Anna Cottrell from Norwich Rotary Club (right) at a break in loading the 40ft container for Ghana.

Other photos show volunteers loading the 40ft container for Ghana.

 

 

 

 

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