Celebrating International Day of Persons with Disability, charity Motivation are bringing accessibility and equality to Uganda with their pioneering Motivation All-Stars Appeal.
International Day of Persons with Disability is a time to celebrate disability and raise awareness of different conditions and abilities. In the UK positive steps are being made in terms of disability inclusion – although more can always be done – but further afield, disability is still widely misunderstood.
In Uganda, disabled children can face daily discrimination that denies them the opportunity to learn, socialise and be active members part of their local community. It can be incredibly isolation. Motivation’s appeal is set to change this attitude.
The All-Stars Appeal is set to use sport and play to break the stigma around disability and ensure all children can be included. The incoming year is set to be a significant one in terms of disability sport, and you can lend a helping hand, too.
Motivation started back in 1989, when two Royal College of Art students entered a competition with the main goal of designing a wheelchair for disabled people in developing countries.
After winning the initial competition, it was a whirlwind couple of years which saw Motivation begin in 1991 when the team – then with just three members – start their first wheelchair workshop.
Working across Eastern Europe, South East Asia, the Middle East, Central America and 17 countries across Africa, today Motivation is a lifeline for many people. Their latest project is set to support disabled children in Uganda where, currently, 91 per cent miss out on primary education due to discrimination.
Waldah is currently the only disabled child in her school in Uganda, but being in school can improve confidence, future prospects and the sense of belonging to your community. For Waldah, her teacher Qasasa is a vital aid.
Qasasa says: “Waldah is really good. She takes a longer time to learn, but the end result is very good… She has improved so much through playing with the other children.”
And Waldah’s mother, Lucy, has also seen the positive impact that going to school has had on her daughter. “Waldah has changed completely – she couldn’t speak three years ago but now she can speak,” enthuses Lucy. “She can walk and she can really sing.She is eating independently, and her communication is good.”
Waldah’s development is made possible thanks to Motivation and the support the charity provides. The All-star Appeal hopes to help even more children like Waldah, with the appealing aiming to raise £240,000 – with all public donations made from 3 December to 3 March 2020 being doubled by the UK Government.
£4 could buy a medal and certificate for a disabled child like Waldah to make her feel like a champion at sports day.
With donations doubled, Motivation can create sports clubs that will give disabled children the confidence to play shoulder to shoulder with non-disabled peers.
They can provide teacher training to create schools where differences are embraced and everyone has the chance to learn. They can train sports coaches to mentor disabled children and teach them about their rights.
The appeal has already been backed by many big names, including Channel 4 presenter and former wheelchair basketball star, Jordan Jarrett-Bryan.
He says: “I know what it’s like to be excluded because of how disability is perceived. At 13 I was told that I couldn’t be part of my football team anymore – it was crushing. I couldn’t join in with my friends and for the first time it felt like my disability was holding me back.
“But when I discovered wheelchair basketball everything changed: it totally restored my belief in what I could do with my life.
“So I’m delighted to support Motivation’s All-Stars Appeal and help give disabled children in Uganda the chance to be champions, too. By using sport and play to break local stigma around disability, Motivation will ensure all children can go to school and build positive futures. This appeal is a great chance to make real change.”
On International Day of Person’s with Disability, can you help a child in Uganda prepare for their future? Give today here – or before 3rd March 2020 – and your donation to the All-Stars Appeal will be doubled by the UK government.
How have you found freedom through mobility? Let us know on Tiwtter or Instagram today.