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Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation completes two special wheelchair donation camps in Ambalantota and

26 February 2015 05:20 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation (CPLF) the first organization for children with cerebral palsy in Sri Lanka has successfully completed two wheelchair donation camps in Ambalantota and Anuradhapura. The free camps will be taking place every Sunday in key locations across Sri Lanka until 19 April 2015. At each camp, specially designed wheelchairs will be donated to children suffering from cerebral palsy, in order to provide them with greater mobility and a better quality of life.  Funds for the 1000 wheelchairs being donated, were raised by the ‘Around the Pearl’ initiative which took place last year and was organized by ‘Wheels for Wheels’, in collaboration with the Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation and WrooM.  

The Ambalantota camp was held on 15 February 2015 and had 90 participants and 54 wheelchairs were donated at the camp. The Anuradhapura camp was held on 22 February 2015, and had a total of 60 participants and 25 wheelchair donations were made. Additionally, free dental screening was conducted by the Sri Lanka Dental Association (SLDA) at each camp and eye screening tests were done with the assistance of the Vision 2020 project. At each of the camps, the CPLF team shared insights about cerebral palsy and created much needed awareness about the disorder.  Cerebral palsy refers to a group of non-progressive disorders of movement and posture caused by the abnormal development of or damage to the motor control centres of the brain. 

Commenting on the impact of the donations, Gopi Kitnasamay, Founder/Chairman of the Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation stated, “It is probably difficult for people who aren’t differently-abled to comprehend just how important a wheelchair is to someone who needs to use it on a day-to-day basis. A wheelchair is so much more than just a piece of equipment; it enables us to transform lives through the gift of mobility. As a parent of a child who uses a wheelchair, my family and I truly understand the important role a wheelchair plays in our child’s life. Without a wheelchair, we would not be able to take our son to his school, or to a park or even for a wedding; he would simply remain house bound. Children suffering from cerebral palsy cannot always move freely, so we started this project to give these children greater mobility, more independence and freedom and we also wanted to give them a chance to actively participate in the community and enjoy a more wholesome and fulfilling life.  At each of these camps, children in need were provided with a wheelchair, and using it will undoubtedly improve their lives. It was a heart-warming experience to see the smiles of the children and the happiness on the faces of their parents.” 

Highlighting the importance of the camps, Ajith Fernando, Managing Director/CEO, CAL stated, “It has been a passion of mine to help children affected by cerebral palsy in Sri Lanka and therefore I have worked closely with the Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation on a variety of projects. Last year my associates and I were involved in the ‘Around the Pearl’ initiative which created awareness about cerebral palsy and raised funds for 1000 wheelchairs to aid children suffering from the disorder. The wheelchair donation camps have been a great success so far and wheelchairs have been handed over after careful assessments were made and proper instructions were given on their usage. The camps have been very well planned and the response has been overwhelming so far.”

For the ‘Around the Pearl’ initiative, a team of 12 business professionals cycled around the entire country to raise funds for the 1000 wheelchairs to assist children suffering from cerebral palsy. The 1427km bicycle ride around Sri Lanka was immensely challenging and during the course of the journey, members of the public were able to follow the team and pledge donations by logging on to www.aroundthepearl.lk.  On their ten-day journey, the team also raised much needed awareness about cerebral palsy and also conducted a series road safety sessions for cyclists under the WrooM project. The funds raised by the ‘Around the Pearl’ team were donated to the Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation to purchase specially designed wheelchairs, which are now being donated to children in need at the camps. 

The special wheelchair donation camps for children with cerebral palsy will also provide an opportunity for parents to seek assistance if they have a child with cerebral palsy or if they suspect that their child may be affected by the disorder.  In an effort to create awareness about the disorder and provide affected parents and their children with assistance, the Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation will also launch the National Cerebral Palsy Register. The register will stand as a database to help identify the most prevalent causes of cerebral palsy and will identify the districts which have a higher percentage of children who are affected by the disorder. 

The camps will be conducted across Sri Lanka as follows: 
Moneragala     –     01 March 2015
Jaffna         –     08 March 2015
Kandy         –     15 March 2015
Ratnapura     –     22 March 2015
Kurunegala    –    29 March 2015
Galle        –    09 April 2015
Batticaloa     –     12 April 2015
Colombo     –     19 April 2015

The Cerebral Palsy Lanka Foundation (CPLF) was started in 2011 with the objective of providing educational and therapeutic services for children with cerebral palsy and associated movement disorders. The CPLF office is located at No. 7 Captain Kelum Rajapakse Mawatha, Wattala. For more information log on to the CPLF website at www.cplank.org/www.cplank.lk or download the CP mobile application.  To register your child for a camp or to find out more, kindly SMS or contact 0777554328 or 0717777355.



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