Our projects Projects India Sharing our expertise in wheelchair provision to build new services and clinics for disabled people in India. The challenge More than 26 million people in India have a disability Nearly 70% of disabled people live in rural areas The percentage of disabled is highest in the age group 10-19 years old India’s population growth is soaring, but so is inequality: a staggering 56% are unable to meet their basic needs. Disabled people encounter the biggest challenges as they face exclusion and discrimination. Disabled people are often excluded by their families, friendship groups and wider communities. They are treated unfairly by prospective employers, or aren’t given jobs at all. Unable to access healthcare and prone to health complications that could be easily cured, conditions like pressure ulcers, respiratory problems and bladder infections can become life-threatening. Without mobility, a support network, good health, or the opportunity to attend school or earn an income, disabled people are often left isolated and vulnerable to poverty. Devendra's mum was struggling until they received a Motivation wheelchair with supportive seating: "[At] the age of five, he had difficulty in standing and walking... Gradually his condition was deteriorating. We took him to district hospital [but] due to lack of treatment and awareness he started developing contractures in his foot. After some time, he was not able to sit independently... "We [didn't] know that this kind of wheelchairs are available, so it was difficult. "His new wheelchair is good and easy in pushing. He is getting good support in sitting. He can sit for long time without any discomfort. Now we are relaxed and comfortable. Devendra is happy and able to perform some activities of daily living like he can eat and drink by himself." Motivation in India We’re working with local partners – including state governments – to improve the equipment and services available for good wheelchair provision. Currently, the quality of wheelchairs available is varied. Many aren’t fitted to the individual and they aren’t designed to suit the rough terrain and potholed roads that are common throughout the country. As a result of poorly fitted equipment, many users experience ulcers and infections. Inadequate design means that many wheelchairs are difficult to use or not possible to repair locally. They end up broken or discarded. Our current projects are establishing a network of services, new clinics and outreach partners. This means we’ll be able to reach thousands of disabled people across the country. Our priorities Improving how wheelchairs are provided Working with partner organisations, government institutions and hospitals across the country, we are improving the standard of wheelchair services across India. That means we are training staff so that they are better able to fit and adjust wheelchairs according to World Health Organization standards. We’re setting up wheelchair clinics and wheelchair skills units where they're most needed, ensuring they will be sustainable and continue to meet the needs of disabled people in India long after our projects end. The impact of an appropriate wheelchair is felt by the whole family, as Devendra's mum explains: "My back and shoulder pain are reducing day by day as I am using correct way of transfer skills. "Every day [we can] take him to our farming land, temples and his friend’s house... Overall our family’s life quality improved." Making sure people have the right wheelchairs We’re identifying new ways to connect with disabled people who urgently need a wheelchair. The Motivation team travel to local partners in communities across the North, North East, South and West of India. They are helping us to identify even more wheelchair users who are in need a wheelchair that fits them and suits their needs. Supporting parents and caregivers During the COVID-19 pandemic, we identified a need amongst families of disabled children to receive greater support and skills in caregiving. Our clinical team in India worked closely with colleagues in Africa to transfer our Parent and Caregiver Training to the region and in 2021 we delivered our first workshop to children who had previously received a wheelchair through our services. This training gives caregivers an understanding of a child's disability and skills for supporting their mobility and everyday needs. We cover topics like feeding and communication, as well as explaining the causes of disability and ways to reduce stigma in the local community. Going forwards we will share this training with community facilitators who can continue this training even further afield, ensuring we reach even more families. Find out more If you have further questions about our work in India, or would like to receive extra information, please visit our sister website www.motivationindia.org or contact our team by email. They will be delighted to hear from you! Support Motivation To support our vital projects in India and Africa, make a donation today.