Mr. Ken Chern, Deputy Principal Officer of the
US Consulate General in HCMC and Dr. Paul Wang
help a double amputee to his new wheelchair.
On March 8, 2007, VNAH worked with local Red Cross in Quang Nam, Danang Province, to organize delivery of 100 wheelchairs to landmine and war victims. This is one of several deliveries during the same week under a program funded by the Freeman Foundation. Mr. Ken Chern, Deputy Principal Officer of the US Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City and three visiting American doctors from Georgetown University Hospital participated in the event. Through special humanitarian funding from the Freeman Foundation, VNAH has provided tens of thousands of wheelchairs to severely disabled war victims, disabled children, and others throughout Vietnam.
The wheelchairs are manufactured in Vietnam with a special design, which is very durable and low cost, and is suitable for rough terrain in rural areas. Amputee recipients love the three-wheel, hand-operated chair, which they can use both for transportation and to conduct a small business, for example, using the wheel chair a s a mobile stand to sell lottery tickets and newspapers, to help
Drs. Paul Wang (L) and Scott Sauer of Georgetown University Hospital help a landmine survivor to her new "xe lac".
support their families. VNAH also helps local wheelchair factories design and manufacture the folding, light weight chairs. Users can repair and replace the chairs with parts available at many local bicycle shops.
With improved government policies on disability issues, such as accessible public transportation and public facilities, more and more disabled Vietnamese are able to travel on busses, and have become more visible on streets and plazas in major cities. This is a welcome sign of a good start for the long awaited integration process for an estimated over six million Vietnamese with disabilities.