Navigation Links
Mercy Ships Recognizes International Day of Disabled Persons
Date:12/2/2008

As the International Day of Disabled Persons is recognized on Dec. 3, Mercy Ships celebrates with the story of a young boy born with backwards pointing feet. After free surgeries onboard the Africa Mercy, a floating hospital docked in Liberia, Benedict's feet are corrected now and he can run and play with the other children his age. High resolution photos and video can be downloaded at www.mercyshipsnewsroom.org

Garden Valley, TX (Vocus) December 2, 2008 -- Eleven-year-old Benedict Menkoah has always stood on his own two feet -- even though they pointed backwards.

He probably doesn't know that today the world promotes issues surrounding disability, that it's the 60th anniversary of the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights, or that his story is an encouragement to others around the world. What he does know is that now, thanks to several free surgeries onboard a Mercy Ship, he can run with his feet facing forward.

"I am able to walk now," Benedict says. "I want to go to school. I can play football. I can play with friends." He is also accepted by his extended family for the first time in many years, allowed back home because he is now "able." As he scurries up a tree to show how easy it is to climb, Benedict adds confidently, "I want to be a doctor." With no money to send his son to school, his father can only hope.

As one of 16 children growing up in rural Liberia, Benedict's bi-lateral clubbed feet were a disfigurement and burden that some family members could not bear. Only an older sister who was a teacher and saw how Benedict himself refused to surrender to his handicap, continued to hope that her little brother's disability would not define the rest of his life. She took care of him, along with her own son and three of Benedict's siblings.

In 2007-- and again in May of 2008-- his sister, Beatrice, brought Benedict to the Mercy Ship in Monrovia for two successive operations on his right foot and then his left foot. Since leaving the ship, he has attended regular physical therapy appointments at John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Monrovia.

Ironically, Benedict's last physio appointment is scheduled for December 13th, the day the Mercy Ship departs from Liberia.

According to the WHO, eighty percent of all disabled people live in developing countries.

"Poverty and disability are so closely related," states Dr. Gary Parker, chief surgeon and 21-year veteran volunteer onboard the Africa Mercy. "But the additional social stigma added to the inaccessibility of health care, further complicates the difficulties that disabled people face. Every person we can help will also help change attitudes in their community towards the stigma of disability," he said.

Originally invited by the UN in 2005 to assist in the health care vacuum created by the nation's civil war, Mercy Ships surgeons have seen much change in the country since the end of the war and free elections.

High resolution photos and video can be downloaded at www.mercyshipsnewsroom.org

About International Day of Persons with Disabilities:
International Day of Disabled Persons aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights, and well-being of persons with disabilities. "Dignity and justice for all of us" is the theme of this year's International Day for Persons with Disabilities, as well as for the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The World Health Organization estimates there are about 600 million disabled people around the world, or about 10 percent of the population. Eighty percent of all disabled people, says the WHO, are in developing countries.

About Mercy Ships:
Over the past 30 years, Mercy Ships has worked in more than 70 countries providing services valued at more than $670 million, directly impacting more than 1.9 million people. More than 850 crew worldwide, representing more than 30 nations, are joined each year by thousands of short-term volunteers. Professionals including surgeons, dentists, nurses, community developers, teachers, cooks, seamen, engineers, and agriculturalists donate their time and skills to the effort. Go to www.mercyships.org

For more information contact:
Pauline Rick
U.S. Public Relations Manager
Mercy Ships
903-939-7649
rickp@mercyships.org
www.mercyships.org

Diane Rickard, Director Media Relations
Mercy Ships International
UK Tel: 44 1438 727 800
rickardd@mercyships.org
www.mercyships.org

###

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/mercy_ship/Africa_Mercy/prweb1692604.htm


'/>"/>
Source: PRWeb
Copyright©2008 Vocus, Inc.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Independence Blue Cross Finalizes New Multi-Year Agreements with Mercy Health System and St. Mary Medical Center
2. University of Detroit Mercy School of Dentistry Moves to Larger Facility on New Corktown Campus
3. Area Dentists, University of Detroit Mercy Team Up to Provide Free Dental Care to Low-Income, Uninsured Detroit-Area Children on Saturday, February 2
4. AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies Acquires Community Behavioral HealthCare Network of Pennsylvania
5. VIDEO from Medialink and Philips: Philips Electronics Unveils First Imagination Light Canvas at the New Mercy Medical Center in Rogers AR
6. INSPIRIS and Mercy Care of Arizona Named Winners in URACs Best Practices in Consumer Empowerment and Protection Awards
7. Mercy Corps Delivers Lifesaving Supplies to China Earthquake Survivors
8. Redskins' Draft Pick Malcolm Kelly Energized By Trip To Mercy Ship In Liberia
9. Mercy Health Plans Announces New Name for Their Medicare Advantage Plans: Mercy Medicare Advantage
10. Keystone Mercy and DVCH to Offer Screenings for National Health Center Week
11. Seamobile Provides Foxnews To Mercy Ships
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Mercy Ships Recognizes International Day of Disabled Persons
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 22, 2017 , ... Plastic Surgery Associates is ... Top Doctor for 2017. Each year, research and information firm, Castle Connolly, releases their ... title in 2015, this marks the 3rd time that Dr. Canales has ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 22, 2017 , ... ... grant from the American Heart Association (AHA) to launch a Rheumatic Heart Disease ... the prevention and diagnosis of rheumatic heart disease (RHD) in high-risk, financially disadvantaged ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 22, 2017 , ... Vighter, a premier ... received certification for ANSI/ASIS PSC.1-2012. The company’s work in countries throughout Southwest Asia, ... of law has been degraded. The PSC.1 standard was created to protect fundamental ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... Tennessee (PRWEB) , ... June 20, 2017 , ... ... care services, announced today that Claritas Capital, a Nashville-based private equity firm, has ... accelerate our expansion plans for some time, and Claritas Capital offers the smart ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... ... 2017 , ... After months of negotiations, FaceCradle USA is proud to announce the debut of ... , “Introducing our product on QVC is something we all worked hard to achieve for ... more than 90 million homes in the United States,” said FaceCradle USA President Dylan Doherty. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/10/2017)... BESSEMER, Ala. , June 9, 2017  Shane K. Burchfield, ... Member recognized for excellence as a Podiatrist in Alabama ... of Podiatry at Family First Foot Care. He brings over 20 ... sports medicine, pain management and healthcare, to his role. ... Family First Foot Care, PC is pleased to welcome ...
(Date:6/8/2017)... , June 8, 2017  StatLab ... leading developer and manufacturer of diagnostic supplies ... today that Cressey & Company LP ("Cressey ... has completed a growth-focused investment in the ... majority ownership position from selling shareholder, Prairie ...
(Date:6/5/2017)... , June 5, 2017 Kohll,s Pharmacy ... the United States . The Raizer is ... a fallen person up to an almost-standing position ... and operated by one assistant and does not ... is simple enough that a child can operate it, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: