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Helping the disabled in rural areas

Special Correspondent

About 400 to benefit from the 11-day camp

TIRUCHI: At a time when modern medical facilities are available even in rural areas, poor physically challenged children continue to remain neglected owing to various reasons including inaccessibility to treatment techniques and heavy expenditure.

Voluntary organisations chip in at regular intervals to bring solace to the suffering people. The special camp conducted by the Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, Mumbai, Brothers and Brothers Foundation, United States and the Rotary Club of Tiruchi Midtown, which commenced here on Friday, would relieve the pain and mental agony of many physically-challenged people.

It has been targeted to cover 400 such people at the 11-day camp when artificial limbs and callipers would be supplied. A sum of Rs. 18 lakh has been allocated for the camp.

A large number of people, mostly polio victims, turned up at the S.V. Marriage Hall at Woraiyur. The Mumbai Trust had made elaborate arrangements and brought in a big team of experts.

With the nature of disability varying from person to person, adequate care was taken to analyse the gravity of the problem, type of artificial limbs and callipers and its size. The experts leave no stone unturned in convincing the people on the utility of the things distributed through practical demonstrations and counselling.

The trust and the foundation have conducted similar camps in Villupuram, Kumbakonam, Aduthurai, Mayiladuthurai, Salem and Vridhachalam recently. More than 2,000 people were distributed artificial limbs worth about Rs. 60 lakh, according to the Project Coordinator, Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry unit of the trust, M. Vivekananthan.

"Our experience has given us insight into the problems and the stigma surrounding these less privileged," Mr. Vivekananthan said, adding that similar camps would be conducted in more towns.

The Rotary Club of Tiruchi Midtown has made arrangements for the city camp and D. Thirunavukarasu, president of the club, said about 80 people were given the callipers on the inaugural day. The former Rotary district governor, A. N. M. Muthuraman, distributed the callipers to them.

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