“My favourite thing about my job is seeing a child with cerebral palsy receive their mobility aid, seeing their life improve."

On the 70th annual World Health Day, it is worth celebrating just how far we have come over the last seven decades. But we must also remember there is still a long way to go until everyone everywhere can access quality healthcare.

Around the world, a lack of national health services often means people must pay for healthcare or go without seeing a doctor. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that, as a result, 100 million people are being forced into poverty while paying for the services they need. What’s more, WHO says at least half of the global population are unable to access healthcare at all.

At Motivation, we ensure that disabled people in the developing world can access the services they need to be healthy and mobile - without sinking further into poverty.

Our wheelchair services provide properly fitted chairs that ensure disabled people can be active and independent. Our training sessions enable disabled people to build their confidence, learn new health management techniques and mobility skills, and access employment so they can work their way out of poverty.

Meet Herbert

Herbert is a physiotherapist, and works as a Motivation wheelchair technician and trainer in Uganda.

“My favourite thing about my job is seeing a child with cerebral palsy receive their mobility aid, seeing their life improve,” Herbert told us.

“For me, who has given the help to them, it is great. But it is also great to see the improvement for the parents, who are able to perform their tasks more quickly and with the peace of mind their child is receiving the correct postural support.

I am also a Parent Carer Trainer. I teach parents of children with disabilities how to look after them, which I find very rewarding. They are often single mothers – the fathers have often run away. This group work helps mothers who are in similar situations provide support to each other.”

A day in the life of Herbert

“We start receiving patients at around nine o’clock. We begin by carrying out a 30-minute assessment to collect their name, age, gender and medical status. The majority of the children we see have cerebral palsy.

Then we note down the environment the patient will be using their wheelchair in. We check their posture and whether they have a history of pressure sores, and ask if they have used a wheelchair before.

After that, we move on to measurements – sitting width, sitting depth and calf length, as well as measurements for their back and head rests."

"We have two different products – the Moti Start and the Moti Go. The Moti Start provides postural support for very small children who do not require mobility yet. It has no wheels. The Moti Go provides both postural support and mobility for children who are a bit older.

Once our assessments are complete, we send the prescription to the wheelchair technicians who adjust each wheelchair to the patient’s needs and intricacies of the their postural state.

Next comes the fitting. We make sure the measurements are correct before training the parents of the new wheelchair user. This includes how to take care of the chair, fit straps, and put the patient safely in and out of the chair.

On average, we see four patients a day. It can take roughly three or four hours from the start of the assessment until they can leave with their new chair.”

Why is this work so important?

“In 2014, a two year old came to visit who was unable to sit up. He received a Moti Start wheelchair and started being able to sit up by himself. His mother was so happy with his progression! We are now waiting for him to be able to progress to a Moti Go wheelchair when he is a bit bigger.”

 Support Motivation this World Health Day

This World Health Day, you can help provide #HealthForAll by supporting Motivation.

Your donation could fund the training of more wheelchair technicians like Herbert, enabling more people to have the essential wheelchair fittings they need. It could fund the manufacture of vital wheelchairs, ensuring more disabled people can live active lives throughout the developing world. It could fund crucial training sessions like the ones Herbert runs, helping mothers to understand their children's disabilities.

Donate today.