Redundant mobility equipment heading from norwich for use in the developing world
Disabled people across the developing world will become more mobile – thanks to a donation from a Norwich housing association which provides affordable accommodation for older people.
Norwich Housing Society has donated a large number of previously used wheelchairs, walking frames and other mobility aids to PhysioNet, a charity which refurbishes and recycles such items before sending them for use in developing countries.
Now the Society is urging other housing providers to donate any used and unwanted mobility aids to the charity.
“The National Health Service is unable to reuse wheelchairs, walking frames and other items, and this means that in many cases they end up being thrown into landfill,” said Mike Allen, chief executive of Norwich Housing Society.
“We had accumulated quite a quantity of these items, and were unwilling simply to throw them away, so when we heard of the work that PhysioNet does, we jumped at the chance to donate them and see them reused by people who really need them.
“It’s such a good idea – we hope that other housing providers will follow our lead and donate their unwanted mobility aids to the charity.”
PhysioNet cleans and refurbishes wheelchairs, crutches, walking frames and other mobility aids, and then sends them to developing countries in Africa, Asia and eastern Europe to be used by disabled adults and children.
The charity works with HM Prison Service, with inmates in various prisons working to refurbish items before they are sent for re-use. The charity sends a shipping container of equipment overseas approximately once a month, and in June it received a Queens Award for Voluntary Service.
“We are very grateful to Norwich Housing Society for donating all these mobility aids,” said PhysioNet volunteer David Potten. “We will be able to refurbish them and bring them back into use to help some of the most vulnerable people in some of the poorest parts of the world.
“We would love to hear from any other housing providers who have such equipment that they no longer need – we will be delighted to collect it and ensure that it is put to good use.”
Individuals or organisations with wheelchairs, walking frames, crutches and other mobility equipment that they no longer use can contact David Potten of PhysioNet on 01603 304216, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.