Today is the 14th International Wheelchair Day, Celebrating the positive impact wheelchairs have on the lives of people with mobility challenges.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 1% of the world’s population needs a wheelchair. In Kenya, it is estimated that over 200,000 people require a wheelchair for enhancing personal mobility for persons with disabilities.
To persons with disability, a wheelchair is a precondition for exercising human rights and equal participation in society. Every year Kenya provides approximately 5,000 wheelchairs through direct purchase from the shop while others through services provided by Health facilities, government agencies like the National Council for Persons with Disabilities, and non-Governmental organizations like Association for the Physically Disabled of Kenya (APDK).
This day also celebrate the great work of the many people who provide support and care for wheelchair users and who make the world a better and more accessible place for people with mobility issues.
Kenya has joined the rest of the world in marking the day at the University of Nairobi graduation grounds with a rallying call to the government and various stakeholders to promote inclusivity and accessibility of wheelchairs for all people who need them.
The day is celebrated amid concerns that people with disability still face discrimination when it comes to job opportunities, and use of public transport.
International Wheelchair Day takes place on 1st March annually.