Over 80 children and youth with disabilities are set to benefit from free corrective surgery thanks to a partnership recently signed between MTN Foundation and Comprehensive Rehabilitation Services for People with Disability in Uganda (CoRSU).
The initial phase of this project, worth over Ugshs 184 million, aims to improve the quality of life for children with disabilities in Uganda, and will see beneficiaries consisting of 60 children and 20 youth drawn from different parts of the country, starting this April.
CoRSU is a private local NGO located in Kisubi, founded in 2006 and officially opened in 2009 with a mandate to prevent disability and to restore ability. It has as such made a tremendous contribution towards improved quality of life for children with disabilities through the provision of quality Orthopaedic and Plastic surgery, assistive devices, therapy and Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR). Each year, CoRSU provides surgery to thousands of children and adults to correct or reduce their impairment.
“The MTN Foundation and CoRSU partnership speaks into our consistent mandate which is to make the lives of our customers brighter. To regain the ability of mobility is a beautiful gift especially to our youngsters who previously may have had their hopes and dreams shattered by previous circumstances. By removing the barriers that children with disabilities face on a daily basis, we can enable them to realise their full potential,” said the Acting CEO MTN Uganda, Mr. Gordian Kyomukama.
According to a 2014 UNICEF report on The Situational Analysis on Children with Disabilities, quoting the 2002 Uganda Census findings by Uganda Bureau of Statistics, 19% of children with disabilities aged seven to sixteen have never been to school and 39% of those aged 17 to 22 had completed fewer than four years of education. With limited access to education, children with disabilities face an added disadvantage of illiteracy, which can further affect their quality of life.
The CEO, CoRSU Hospital, Dr. Davide Naggi commended the MTN Foundation for the partnership.
“We thank MTN Foundation for coming to the rescue of the future leaders of this nation. Children with disabilities are vulnerable but also an important and valuable part of our society. They are often marginalized, but thanks to the support from partners such as the MTN Foundation, we are able to redefine that for the better, by providing these young souls equal opportunities at life and restoring their hope for a brighter future.”
The one-year partnership between the MTN Foundation and CoRSU will also see MTN staff visit the hospital from time to time to spend time with the children, engage in community work and donate various items for the children’s comfort.
The MTN Uganda Foundation is a non-profit entity that was inaugurated in July 2007 as a vehicle through which MTN Uganda implements its corporate social investments (CSI). The main objective of the foundation is to improve the quality of life in communities across the country by supporting and implementing sustainable projects in Education, Health and other National Priorities.