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Uganda 2015

On the 14th of June Walkabout Foundation made its second trip to the Soft Power Health clinic in Jinja, a town in the eastern region of Uganda near the banks of lake Victoria and the River Nile, and surrounding villages. We brought with us another 200 ‘Tough Rider’ and ‘Salama’ wheelchairs, supplied by the Association for the Physically Disabled of Kenya (APDK), as well as an expert team of volunteers and physiotherapists.

Throughout the distribution the team tirelessly devoted their time and expertise to making sure that every wheelchair was fitted according to each person’s challenges and needs. This was a very demanding task, as many of the recipients were children suffering from severe cases of cerebral palsy, malaria, hydrocephalus or polio. Everyone was stunned by the complexity of the disabilities they encountered, but left inspired and deeply moved after providing another 200 people with the chairs they desperately needed, bringing new hope and possibilities for a brighter future.

We’d like extend our special thanks to the team at Soft Power Health clinic, who hosted the project and gathered together numerous physiotherapists who are in scarce supply in Uganda. This means that each recipient received, and will continue to receive, the highest level of care.

We’d also like to thank our volunteers, whose dedication and passion is continuing to make the Walkabout vision a reality, changing hundreds of lives.

Shifan’s Story

Seven-year-old Shifan was left paralysed when she was struck by cerebral malaria as a small child. Her mother carried her everywhere until she became too heavy and had no choice but to leave Shifan at home while she went to work. In 2015, Walkabout gave Shifan her very first ToughRider wheelchair. Having a wheelchair means Shifan can now go to school, play, learn, and make friends. The happiest of students, Shifan is the pride and joy of her class. This wheelchair has given her freedom, independence and access to education.

Uganda 2014 film

Uganda 2014

Team Walkabout headed to Uganda in March 2014 to distribute 200 wheelchairs alongside Soft Power Health’s Allan Stone Community Clinic in Bujugali near Jinja. Bryony and Stefanie were accompanied by our US Chairman, Kevin Mahaney as well as some fantastic volunteers from both the UK and Uganda.

As well as a full distribution day at the clinic, the team also loaded up a truck full of wheelchairs and visited children homes and made journeys to remote villages and individual houses to fit and donate chairs. Being able to change a person’s life in their own home environment, by demonstrating the correct way to enter the home, go up steps and keep the chair in the best condition was extremely rewarding for the entire extended team. We are proud to have been able to make a difference in the lives of those who could only have wished for the independence and mobility that a chair gave them.

Walkabout would like to thank Soft Power Health, the community clinic staff and volunteers, UK physiotherapist Heather Williams who volunteered her time and knowledge, as well as the local kayaking community who pitched in with some of the heavy lifting. Another successful trip!