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1000 disabled Africans to receive free treatment in India through the #OperationRehab initiative

Published by APO Africa Newsroom on Tue, 10 Jan 2017

Over 2.8 million (http://APO.af/gqdOpi) people suffer from some form of disability in South Africa alone and around 600,000 are listed as severely disabled, according to a report based on the last censusThe first beneficiary of #OperationRehab has returned to South Africa with a new prosthetic leg #OperationRehab aims to revolutionise the delivery of healthcare and education to disabled people in Africa by offering free or heavily subsidised medical treatment, rehabilitation, education and skills development to thousands of disabled Africans over the next few years, starting in South Africa.The initiative will empower the beneficiaries, reduce the financial burden on their families and contribute to Africas economic growth.#OperationRehab is modelled on the stellar work of the Disable Welfare Trust of India (www.DisableIndia.org) located in Gujarat State. The Disable Welfare Trust is a highly successful initiative offering free medical treatment, rehabilitation and vocational training to hundreds of underprivileged children in India. To date, the Trust has treated and educated more than 4,000 children. The Trusts founder, Shree Kanubhai Tailor, is a noted philanthropist and disabled peoples champion.Shree Kanubhai Tailor will lend his expertise to the #OperationRehab project and oversee the replication of the Trusts model in South Africa in partnership with local government officials, disabled peoples groups and corporate funders. The initiative is led by South African marketing and advertising agency Media Revolution (www.MediaRevolution.co.za) as a part of its corporate social responsibility programme. Media Revolution has teamed up with Shree Kanubhai Tailor to allow thousands of beneficiaries to fly to India for treatment. The pair will also work to create treatment and rehabilitation centres in South Africa.Dharmesh Nagar, Strategy Director at Media Revolution, notes that the project aims to restore dignity and empower those who are disabled. At #Operation Rehab, we help the poorest of the poor and help restore their dignity. Through the donation of medical treatment and assistive devices, we empower disabled people to take their place in the workforce and relieve them and their families of a significant financial burden.With the support of donors, beneficiaries are given hope and a new future.In India, the Disable Welfare Trust is able to treat thousands of disabled people at no charge, thanks to the generous support of its sponsors. We hope to see South African and African companies stepping forward with a similar level of support.The first beneficiary of #OperationRehab, 55-year-old Sharad Narsai of Lenasia, returned to South Africa just before Christmas with the ultimate Christmas gift: a new, life-changing prosthetic leg. Speaking of his experience, Narsai said I had never before experienced care on the level received at the Disable Welfare Trust centre.It is mind-blowing and completely exceeded my expectations, he added. I have never been treated with such care and respect at a healthcare facility. And it is truly heart-warming to see how well the centre cares for the disabled children who are resident there. Many of them were abandoned by their parents because of their disabilities, but at the Disable Welfare Trust they are happy, loved and well-educated. The full-time art teacher at the centres school has no arms so he paints using his mouth. One young woman who spent her entire childhood there is now a qualified doctor and still goes back to work with the children. These success stories would not have been possible without the Disable Welfare Trusts good work. South Africa desperately needs a facility like this, declared Narsai.According to a Statistics South Africa (http://APO.af/gqdOpi) report based on the last census, over 2.8 million people suffer from some form of disability in South Africa alone and around 600,000 are listed as severely disabled. This highlights the urgent need to empower disabled people and bring them into the mainstream of education and work so that they can continue to contribute to society, in line with the goals of President Jacob Zumas Presidential Working Group on Disability (http://APO.af/wFC4Yi).The #OperationRehab initiative calls all like-minded organisations, companies and individuals to join forces and advance the goal of creating a highly efficient treatment, rehabilitation and vocational centre for disabled people in Africa.All new partners and sponsors will benefit from the expertise of South African marketing and advertising agency Media Revolution to publicise and promote their role in restoring livelihoods and improving the lives of disabled people in Africa.Distributed by APO on behalf of Media Revolution.Media Contact:Dharmesh Nagar+27 (0) 72 552 1759dharmesh@mediarevolution.co.zaAbout Media Revolution:Johannesburg-based Media Revolution (www.MediaRevolution.co.za), an affiliate of the international Starcom Mediavest Group, is a full-service communications, marketing and advertising firm delivering advertising, PR, social media, branding, events and shop-fitting services to clients across Southern Africa. Headed by Strategy Director Dharmesh Nagar and Chairman Marcus Brewster, Media Revolution has a seven-year track record of supporting clients across a broad range of industry verticals. Media Revolutions brand-building capacity has secured business from large multinationals such as Samsung, Hisense, Nissan, Visa, and Fattis & Monis, among others.About the Disable Welfare Trust of India:The highly successful Disable Welfare Trust of India (www.DisableIndia.org) was founded by Shree Kanubhai Tailor, a noted philanthropist and disabled peoples champion. The Trusts Centre for Learning in Gujarat State, India, includes a multifunctional hospital, rehabilitation centre, accommodation facilities, education facilities and vocational training centres for the disabled. The Trust has undertaken to coordinate the treatment of South African disabled children and adults and provide guidance for the creation of centres in South Africa modelled on the Trusts Gujarat Centre.For more information on #OperationRehab:Video of Sharad Narsai in India: https://youtu.be/6tsF5_eP_KkOverview of #OperationRehab project: https://youtu.be/6tsF5_eP_KkWays to support the project: Contact Dharmesh Nagar on +27 (0) 72 552 1759 or at dharmesh@mediarevolution.co.za.Media filesDownload logoMultimedia contentImage: The #OperationRehab initiative is led by South African marketing and advertising agency Media Revolution as a part of its corporate social responsibility programmeVideo: #Operation Rehab restoring dignity and self respect for the disabled
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