Glencoe Foundation– support for Walk for Life Clubfoot Program Bangladesh Established: 2003
The FOOT Foundation Guatemala Established: 2007 Mission: Florida-based O&P outreach team provides orthotic and prosthetic services to children and adults of Guatemala and conducts charity efforts in Florida, improving lives one person at a time. Why: To provide educational opportunities to local Guatemala O&P providers. Need: New and used pediatric componentry—especially knees, pylons, and feet. Adult and pediatric orthotic components (such as sidebars, knee joints, and ankle joints) also are needed. Achievement: “We’ve been able to educate Guatemalan O&P providers to maintain care of the devices that we’ve fit. This education helps the locals provide for themselves for years to come,” says Dino Scanio, CO, LO, pediatric orthotist, clinical director and founder of the FOOT Foundation.
Georgian Foundation for Prosthetic Orthopedic Rehabilitation (GEFPOR) Tbilisi, Georgia Established: 2003 Mission: The Foundation aims to ensure that all disabled people in Georgia have access to appropriate, quality, and sustainable physical rehabilitation services (physiotherapy, prosthetic, and orthotic fitting) without any discrimination. Why: GEFPOR is the successor of an International Committee of the Red Cross joint effort that was formed in 1994 after internal warfare caused an overwhelming need for orthotic and prosthetic services. Need: Financial donations to help build a new rehabilitation center (project is partially funded) and for equipment. Achievement: 15,660 appliances delivered.
Why: No such services available in this area. Need: Donations. To date: 15 to 30 people treated every quarterly visit.
Mission: Every year in Bangladesh an estimated 4,500 children are born with clubfoot deformity. In Bangladesh, Walk for Life partners with the Ministry of Health to run clinics throughout the country.
Range of Motion Project (ROMP) Guatemala, El Salvador, Mexico, Haiti, Ecuador, and USA
Why: An alternative to corrective orthopedic surgery for clubfoot, the Ponseti Method, developed in the 1950s by Dr. Ignacio Ponseti, involves a gradual correction of one or both of the afflicted feet by casting them in a progressively closer-to-normal foot position. Essentially, the foot is slowly stretched back into a normal position. This takes time and is most successful while the child is still young and the tissues are soft and pliable.
Achievement: 13,050 feet corrected.
Phoenix Rising for Haiti (PRH) Haiti Established: June 2010 Mission: A multidisciplinary rehabilitation team that provides care in one of the poorest regions of Haiti: Port-de-Paix, in the Northwest Department of Haiti. The effort restores functional mobility by providing comprehensive evaluation and treatment of orthopedic conditions, including prosthetics, orthotics, physical therapy, casting, and wound care. PRH’s goal is to create a network of sustainable rehabilitation clinics throughout rural Haiti run by local PRH trained Haitians. Why: Extreme need of O&P services in an area severely underserved, and “we fell in love with the area and its people,” says Gretchen Wellman, CO, director of orthotics, Phoenix Rising for Haiti and pediatric orthotist at Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics, Inc. Need: Desperate need for an oven and more reliable equipment for its O&P lab. Also needed, more clinicians and technicians to volunteer to travel to Haiti. Achievement: Countless successes and stories.
Prosthetics in Nigeria Nigeria Established: January 2013 Mission: Oklahoma-based Progressive Orthotic & Prosthetic Services has partnered with Voice of the Martyrs to begin a five-year project in Nigeria to establish a prosthetic & orthotic industry. As a father and son team, Jeff, Brandon, and Michael Arnette are training Nigerians to meet the needs of their own community.
Misson: ROMP believes in a more equal distribution of prosthetic and orthotic care in the world. Its mission is to provide prosthetic limbs and orthotic braces to those who cannot afford or do not have access to these services, empowering them to actively contribute to their families and communities. Why: “ROMP believes that every patient is deserving of the highest level of prosthetic and orthotic care, regardless of their ability to pay for it,” says Patrick Mathay, director of Range of Motion Project. Need: ROMP’s donation center is accepting endoskeletal prosthetic components in good condition. Representatives ask that AOPA inform patients and families that organizations like ROMP exist, and that they accept donated prosthetic limbs that can be used to significantly improve the lives of people in need. Achievement: Provided more than 3,000 prosthetic and 5,000 orthotic devices to patients.
You Able Onlus Italy, and abroad (Etiopia, Tanzania, Ghana, R.D.Congo, Palestine, Syria, Perù, Haiti) Established: 2012 Misson: You Able Onlus is an international non-profit committed to improving the quality of lives of people with a disability by providing rehabilitation services, also for victims of wars, natural disasters or other emergency situations. Why: The main purpose was to form a task force of professionals with different skills (in the scientific, economic, medical and notfor-profit sectors) able to manage specific rehabilitation projects and to offer services for other organizations. Need: “Our aim is to provide training. We have a good doctor in rehabilitation who can manage medical direction. It’s hard in Italy to find a good P&O person that wants help for an international project,” says Elena Bonacini, president, You Able Onlus. ACHIEVEMENT: Successful projects in countries suddenly at war (Congo, Palestine, Syria).
SEPTEMBER 2013 O&P Almanac