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Mobility aids put smiles on faces

Aug 13. 2017
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By The Nation

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THE MENTAL Health Department (MHD) says it is trying to make people with physical challenges happier by equipping them with mobility-assistance tools.

“We plan to help 2,000 people who have had mobility problems under our charity project this year,” MHD director-general Sqn Leader Boonruang Triruangworawat said. 

The plan is being conducted through a collaboration involving Wheels of Hope, Wheels for the World, Wheelchairs of Hope, Med Aids for Kids, Convoy of Hope, and various firms. 

Mobility-assistance tools cover wheelchairs, walkers, rollators and walking sticks. 

The MHD has been supplying these aids in the name of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn. In its latest trip to Sa Kaew province, it delivered mobility tools to 185 people. 

“We hope that these tools will reduce their obstacles and boost their morale,” Boonruang said. 

He said wheelchairs from the MHD project were special because they were personalised. 

“We have made sure wheelchairs fit the physical size of the person, so they don’t have to worry about falling out,” he added.

As part of the project, the recipients and their relatives receive training on how to use the mobility-assistance tools. 

According to Boonruang, this project has been going since 2000. To date, more than 10,000 aids have been distributed to help the physically challenged. Together, these tools are worth more than Bt205 million. 

MHD deputy director general Dr Samai Sirithongthaworn said the Rajanagarindra Institute of Child Development conducted a survey among 200 recipients in 2014.

“Of those polled, 96 per cent said their quality of life had improved thanks to the mobility-assistance tools,” he said.

He added that up to 99.5 per cent of the respondents also said they were very happy. 

 

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