Posts Tagged ‘GPRehab’

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Changing the Way We Think About Disability_Medical? or Social View???

March 8, 2011

I came across Analou Suan’s article about the general attitude of the people in our society towards PWDs. Analou is the Director of GPRehab in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental, someone I first met in Silliman University when ALYANA was shown in the city in December 2008. Three months later in March 2009, ALYANA was back there under the sponsorship of GPRehab and Silliman U. It was discussed by the two immediately after Alyana’s first showing that it would be reshown in the 1st Autism Awareness Day that they will hold in the city sparked by the interest in autism that the film generated in the viewers. I returned there with the president of Autism Society Philippines Dang Koe, OT Prof. and owner of Independent Living Learning Center Archie David and ASP E.O. Ranil Sorongon. The following year, GPRehab next sponsored the showing of SILENT ODYSSEY, my next advocacy docu after Alyana, a film on Deaf Filipinos.

Analou writes:

“A friend came to me one time and asked: Why do you expose children with disabilities in public during parades and other activities? Are you just not inviting criticisms and worse, discrimination, when you do that?

She retorted by saying that:

… They are there because they want to raise awareness about the rights of children with disabilities. They are there because they want society to know that the existence of these children cannot be ignored anymore. More importantly, they want society to understand that, although the national government itself has already, supposedly, undertaken legislative measures to ensure the inclusion of disabled children in society, there has to be moves to facilitate local implementation of these laws, with the local government and its concerned agencies working together with parents and families with mutual respect, to create an environment that will nurture the children and promote their development.

To better understand that, she explained the medical and social views that the society have towards the PWDs. To read the full article, click changing-the-way-we-think-about-disability

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Wheelchair—Key to Better Quality of Life for PWDs

March 6, 2011

Just how important is an adjustable wheelchair to a person with disability?? GPRehab in Dumaguete City came up with a Wheelchair Workshop after seeing the lack of low-cost and durable wheelchairs for children in the Philippines, and most importantly, to help improve the lives of PWDs.

GPRehab looks at technical equipment as a very important component in the medical and social rehabilitation process of most specially, persons with physical disabilities. These devices – wheelchairs, walkers, cruches, etc. – provide the means by which Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) become more mobile in their homes and their communities. When augmented by highly accessible and supportive community, these equipment can maximize their (PWDs) human potential and ensure them of a productive and, to a certain extent, respected life.

Recognizing this, and seeing that there is a dearth of durable low–cost and well–fitted technical equipment, specification wheelchairs for children, GPRehab decided to manufacture its own wheelchair, one that will suit the needs of its growing clientele under its CHILD project. With the idea coming from a Norwegian engineer who unselfishly shared it with one of the Foundation’s physical therapists, an adjustable wheelchair that would fit both children and adults was developed. The subsequent wheelchairs were given to physically involved children – beneficiaries of CHILD.

Thus, the wheelchair workshop was born.

Seeing that the adjustable wheelchair can answer the needs of so many other children with disabilities and can help open up opportunities for them, GPRehab through GP CHAIR SHOP has decided to market it, initially in the province of Negros Oriental. More than a fundraising undertaking, it is seen as a door opener for countless children who otherwise would have remained within the confines of their homes. It will help them go to school, play with other children, be seen in the community. In other words, it will open up a whole new world for them, a world where their rights are recognized and their potential developed when used in an environment that is fully accepting of their limitations.

For, it becomes more than a wheelchair. It becomes a key to a better quality of life. (Source: wheelchair-workshop)

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On to my next destination_the World of the Cerebral Palsied

December 3, 2008

The morning of November 29, 2008 marked my official entry into the world of the Cerebral Palsied (CP). Footages of the lovable CP kids in Dumaguete City at the GPRehab Center being managed by my advocate friend, Analou Suan were shot and informal interviews with their caregivers—mothers and lola—were conducted as part of my research for my next documentary which at this stage has no title nor any form as yet.

Analou Suan plays with GPRehab CP kids

Analou Suan plays with GPRehab CP kids

At this point, the CP film is but a great, grand dream knowing how difficult it would be again for me to realize it having no clear resources except some proceeds from the intermittent showings of my two previous films and small side jobs. I have dream bubbles in the air. Their realization is my challenge.

In seeing the CP kids, I had mixed feelings of sadness and pity, joy and happiness—what would their future be like? In the afternoon, I joined Analou and her amiable staff in the screening that they conducted in the Barangay Hall of Bacong in Metro-Dumaguete as part of their Community-Based Rehabilitation program. A baby, about a year-and-a-half years old with a very young mother was unfortunately screened positively as having cerebral palsy.

I am currently reading the book “Disabled Village Children” by David Werner which Analou gave me last November 30 before I returned to Manila. The book is easy to understand and the illustrations and pictures help a lot in understanding the physical deformities being discussed. A physical therapist (PT) by profession, Analou introduced me to cerebral palsy (CP) conditions such as spasticity and ataxia. Seeing the condition first-hand hastened my understanding of those words which used to only breezed through my ears because I have no knowledge about them at all. A PT staff, Imee also graciously shared with me her notes but they are so foreign to me, very medical and technical in approach that I feel like an idiot in trying hard to make sense out of what I was reading. Nevertheless, in time I would for sure understand at least a part, if not all of the contents. Well, that’s my hope.

I have tip-toed into the CP world…and I do not know how long I would take this time before I come to finally understand their condition. The film on autism took me two-years-and-a-half to finish; the film on Deaf Filipinos, nearly two years… Only God knows when I would be able to finish this one. I do have my own plans and target dates but when I fail to pursue them for reasons which at times are unexplainable, I just think that they are blessings in disguise. God is my planner. He shows me the way to get to the right people and to get the right information. Everything gets realized according to His plan.