Training Workshop on Artificial Limbs
The Sata Foundation aims to fully finance training workshops on the making and fitting of artificial limbs (orthotics and prosthetics) for the benefit of the poverty-stricken disabled in developing countries, organized by the Thai Industrialist Development Forum (TIDF). The aim of such two-week workshops is to train 1-2 persons from developing countries like Cambodia, Laos, Nepal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and a group of persons from Thailand to make and fit artificial limbs free of cost for those in need in their native countries, using locally available materials. Should such materials be not available, they will be donated free of cost by TIDF, with the cost of transportation coming from fundraising.
For several years, TIDF has been making and fitting artificial limbs free of cost to those in need. One artificial leg made by TIDF costs approximately US$135, and one artificial foot US$ 2.50. Artificial limbs made by TIDF are made-to-measure, and not ready-made (not 'one size fits all'). Materials and parts are donated by factories which are members of TIDF. The artificial limbs may not be as beautiful as those made by hi-tech companies at high cost, but these limbs serve the practical purpose of enabling the disabled to lead their lives as normal. For further information, please visit the following websites: http://www.bangkokpost.net/outlookwecare/231199_Outlook01.html
The training workshop's goal is in line with the Sata Foundation's objective. We, at the Sata Foundation, aspire to see the plight of victims of armed conflicts and poverty all over the world alleviated, especially by their own compatriots. It is, therefore, appropriate that local people be trained to take care of their fellow citizens.
The first of such training workshops fully financed by the Sata Foundation was held in Bangkok on 16-27 February 2004, with 15 trainees coming from Sri Lanka, Nepal, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, and an area in Thailand still replete with active landmines. The Governments of Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia, and Myanmar officially nominated their trainees. Two trainees came from Cooperative Orthotic and Prosthetic Enterprise (COPE), which is a partnership between POWER (a well-known UK NGO), the Ministry of Health of Laos, World Vision (another famous NGO) and the Cambodian School of Prosthetics and Orthotics to provide the orthotic and prosthetic service in Laos. Another 3 persons were sent by the Catholic Office for Emergency Relief and Refugees (COERR). The Sata Foundation paid all expenses, including return airfares, meals and accommodation as well as the rental of the training class rooms. This first training workshop was represented by trainees with different religious backgrounds: Buddhism, Christianity, and Hinduism. It was unfortunate that the 2 trainees nominated by the Government of Sierra Leone in West Africa could not travel to Bangkok on this occasion. Otherwise, we would have had Muslim representatives as well.
We, at the Sata Foundation, would like to seek your valuable support to continue funding the training workshops as well as the provision of prosthetic kits for those trained by us to make and fit artificial limbs back home free of charge.
The photographs below show a certificate given at the end of the first training workshop; some of the practical training sessions; and the felicitous atmosphere at the end-of-training celebration.
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