Aid to benefit Fijians living with disabilities

Spinal Injury Association rep Joeli Susu tries out the new wheelchair given by Latter Day Church and Vodafone Foundation Fiji in Suva. Picture: SOPHIE RALULU

MORE than 2000 Fijians living with disabilities are expected to benefit from the $2.6 million worth of walking aid and patient dignity and care equipment received by the Spinal Injury Association of Fiji (SIA).

Speaking during the handover at the Pacific Theological College in Suva yesterday, the association’s executive director Joshko Wakaniyasi said through their work with British charity organisation, Physionet UK in the past 10 years, they had been able to request them for tailor-made equipment to suit the needs of people with disabilities in the country.

“We had to solidify our base as an organisation, to allow trust because when you ask for someone with sophisticated equipment like the one we have today, these are high-end equipment that costs over $F30,000 dollars and we need to ensure they are used smartly,” he said.

“While these equipment are sophisticated, they also require knowledge and skills to ensure that they are on the roads assisting those with disabilities.

“Because most of this equipment is not made in Fiji, we have generous donors like The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Fiji and the Vodafone ATH Fiji Foundation that covers container shipping, consignment and handling costs and even donating wheelchairs.”

LDS church’s welfare manager Paul Whippy said through their wheelchairs for the world charity work, they provided 250 wheelchairs including parts every year.

He said this was their seventh container given to SIA.

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