Dong Ha, Quang Tri (3 December 2018) — Today is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, an international observance promoted by the United Nations since 1992.
On this Day, Project RENEW looks back upon what we have done to support persons with disabilities during the past 10 years. Victim Assistance and Disability Support are an integral part of Project RENEW’s humanitarian work. The goal is to assist victims of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) and Agent Orange (AO) and other disabled families to restore their lives and livelihoods through provision of needed support to maximize their potential for development and integration into society.
Provision of customized prostheses and assistive devices
Project RENEW has launched a P&O mobile outreach program since 2008 to provide services to persons with disabilities in rural, mostly mountainous areas of the province who had never had access to such services.
Doctors and technicians travel into remote areas in a van equipped with tools and machines necessary to conduct on-site examinations, to fit and adjust the custom devices, and make sure amputees and other mobility impaired children and adults can function comfortably with their artificial limbs and braces.
As a result, 2,000 amputees in Quang Tri and Quang Binh Provinces have been fitted prostheses and other assistive devices to restore their mobility.
In April 2018, after many years of suspension for construction of a new provincial hospital and training of new technicians in Ha Noi, the Orthopedic Workshop has been restored to full operational capacity at the Provincial General Hospital. This is good news for amputees and other persons with disabilities from Quang Tri and even neighboring provinces such as Quang Binh.
Nearly 500 families with persons with disabilities and war victims in Trieu Phong, Hai Lang, and Cam Lo District have participated in revolving credits loans to improve their livelihoods.
150 families with war victims received support to develop their household economies by growing mushrooms.
111 visual-impaired people and disabled persons in the districts of Vinh Linh, Hai Lang, Trieu Phong, Quang Tri Town and Dong Ha City have participated in vocational training to make incense, brooms and toothpicks for sale. Three workshops have been built and dedicated to the Blind Association of Hai Lang, Trieu Phong and Quang Tri Town, enabling their members to expand their production activities.
Through local partners, RENEW has helped 219 families with persons with disabilities, UXO victims and AO victims in the districts of Hai Lang, Trieu Phong, and Cam Lo to raise cows to generate income.
Promoting the rights of people with disabilities
With the Provincial Disabled Persons Organization, Project RENEW has organized information sessions for 1,876 people with disabilities and disability cadres in 54 communes and wards of nine districts/cities of Quang Tri Province, raising public awareness of persons with disabilities and disseminating the Law on Persons with Disabilities.
RENEW also helped 20 families with AO victims with support to renovate their homes and improve sanitation in order to mitigate the burden of caregivers at these families.
1.274 families with UXO victims and others residing in far-off and mountainous areas have been provided with 500-liter water tanks for reserving clean water for daily subsistence.
Quang Tri Province has over 37,000 people with disabilities, of which 15,000 have suffered disabilities related to AO and over 8,500 people victimized by UXO. This is a big challenge for the local government in assisting persons with disabilities in general and war victims specifically.
Acknowledging our donors
Project RENEW would like to thank the Irish Aid / Irish Embassy in Vietnam for sponsoring our Victim Assistance and Disability Support program since 2016 along with support from Friends of Project RENEW through FJC – A Foundation of Philanthropic Funds. Our profound appreciation also goes to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the U.S. Department of State, foundations and individuals for your support in previous years.
Project RENEW was established in 2001 as a joint effort between the government of Quang Tri Province and interested INGOs to “restore the environment and neutralize the effects of the war” – with the main focus on unexploded ordinance.
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