Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI – Disabled people face a world of difficulty – especially young people who suffer.
But one young man with disabilities is a shining light and example to others.
Trịnh Công Thanh, head of the Association of Young People with Disabilities in Hà Nội, is one young man with disabilities leading the way by helping other young people.
Thanh has researched and successfully manufactured the wheelchairs for Vietnamese disabled people.
Currently, wheelchairs in Việt Nam are largely imported through medical equipment supply companies, domestic and foreign charities. The amount of wheelchairs produced domestically is still limited.
Thanh has used his own money to train in engineering and design to learn how to make wheelchair.
“At the beginning, I thought I easily can assemble a wheelchair by collecting some spare parts from a bike accessories shop but it was not,” Thanh told Nhân Dân (People) newspaper.
“After much failure, my friends and I are successful in producing the wheelchairs with same operational mechanism as the imported ones.”
Nearly 200 wheelchairs ‘Made in Việt Nam’ under his project named ‘Raise your foot’ were donated to disabled people.
His group also supports users maintenance services and replacement spare part.
Design of the wheelchair was improved to better use and could be easily repaired at bike repair shops, Thanh said.
But despite his best efforts and hard work, he has been forced to suspend his project due to a lack of funding.
Thanh said he hoped to have more money in the future to help supply more wheelchairs.
In addition “Raise your foot” project, he also opens a Centre for Legal Counseling and Judicial Support for Vietnamese People with Disabilities.
The idea of setting up a trusted address for legal support for people with disabilities arose from he was working as collaborator at the Hà Nội Justice Department.
During that time, he found that many people with disabilities still faced many difficulties to access legal aid, so he tried to set up the centre with the permission of the Hà Nội Justice Department.
The centre has two consultants and a team of collaborators, who are lawyers and experts in various social sectors.
The centre mainly helps disabled people about education, vocational training, healthcare and legal policy.
It also provided legal support to people with disabilities as representatives to participate in legal proceedings, implementing legal procedures, Thanh said.
Along the hotline 1900.558846, the centre also has many groups and clubs to receive support requests of disabled people.
"We are going to set up branches in some localities to help more people,” Thanh said.
Nguyễn Thị Thúy, a consultant said they faced marginalisation and severe social, economic and civic disparities.
According to the National Disability Committee, Việt Nam now has about eight million people with disabilities.
There are more 98,790 people with disabilities in Hà Nội and nearly 50,000 in HCM City, according to the statistics of Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.
Many of them have jobs from the recruitment of businesses and manufacturing establishments in the cities.
However, companies employing disabled labourers said although the State had policies to support tax and loans for enterprises but the related procedures was cumbersome.
Trần Thị Thúy Vy, a young disabled person and the owner of an establishment producing a book in HCM City, said she understood the sorrow of unlucky ones.
“I know that if they are respected, they will dedicate themselves to the work. I look forward to welcoming more new people, helping them to have stable jobs, living for themselves, their families and society,” Vy said.
The HCM Youth Union also organised many activities and workshops in many localities to help people with disabilities integrate into the community. - VNS