International Wheelchair Day
International Wheelchair Day raises awareness of the fact that there are millions of people in the world who need a wheelchair but are unable to acquire one. Lack of access to mobility for people with disabilities continues to be widespread. Despite the challenges of global wheelchair delivery, once it is procured for those in need, the benefits to their health, employment, social integration, and life satisfaction are apparent.
Did you know? Globally, 132 million people require a wheelchair. However, in developing countries, less than 10% have access to one.
In other words, over 110 million people who require a wheelchair do not have access to one. This socially marginalized community has every right to be able to access the world; by simply acquiring a wheelchair, their lives can change drastically. Enabling wheelchair users to celebrate the positive impact it has had in their lives brings the many benefits of wheelchairs and inclusivity into focus.
Some benefits of increased access to mobility include productivity leading to improved mental health, a chance to contribute to society through employment, and an increased income to enhance the quality of life and boost socioeconomic status. For children with disabilities, gaining a positive self-image, self-confidence, friendship skills, and problem-solving skills are all beneficial outcomes of inclusivity. These benefits lead to a domino effect on families as well, teaching parents and friends to be more accepting of differences.
This day is also for celebrating the great work of the many millions of people who provide wheelchairs worldwide, who provide support and care for wheelchair users, and who make the world a more accessible place for people with mobility issues.
In 2021, there were over 20,177 beneficiaries of Helping Hand for Relief and Development’s Comprehensive Physical Rehabilitation Program. This program promotes healing and aims to equalize opportunities. We provide wheelchairs for those who need them. We also provide other equipment, supplies, orthotics, prosthetics, and audiology. Our services include physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and psychotherapy.
Help mobilize an inclusive world; donate one wheelchair for $300 today! Please visit www.hhrd.org/PhysicalRehab
About the Author