Founded in 1997, the RAWWD (Rehabilitation Aids Workshop by Women with Disability) continues to support a large number of people who use supporting devices for carrying out daily tasks or are with prosthetics. Touted as one of India's largest NGOs, RAWWD has been providing various kind of support for these people for the past 22 years.
Venkatanaayanamma, a B. Com graduate, had lost all hopes of finding a suitable job due to her disability when someone told her about Bengaluru-based RAWWD. The NGO empowers women like Venkatanaayanamma by providing training and teaching them to make supporting devices including prosthetics.
Venkatanaayanamma decided to join the NGO when she was 20-years old, and just after three years, she has mastered the skills of making Dennis-Brown Baby Splints, which are designed for children with clubfoot. As a child, she had polio which made completing her graduation quite hard for her.
Unable to find a job, Venkatanaayanamma depended on her family for financial support. "I was not able to earn anything, and it was quite frustrating," she told NewzHook.
RAWWD leaves no stone unturned in a bid to positively impact lives of women like Venkatanaayanamma, says RAWWD finance and administrative manager Indira Moses. Established to promote equality of women with disabilities, RAWWD teaches women who are disabled to make orthotics, prosthetics and other devices for people who have limited mobility.
Following this training, these women are then employed at RAWWD for three years. After completion of three years, they are free to join any other organization, Moses added. In order to join the training program, you need to have completed class 12. Science students get preference.
While students from other streams such as commerce and arts can also join the program, they need to attend some additional classes. Trainees do not need to shell out a single dime for this training, accommodation or even the study materials.
A lot of students from rural parts of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu show interest in joining this program. These trainees are more often than not from lower economic group families, and although they are born without any sort of disability, they are highly likely to suffer paralysis or polio within just a year of birth, says Moses.
RAWWD makes prosthetics and orthotics for various hospitals, NGOs, and individuals across India. Team members visit people's homes in order to take measurements for customized appliances. Aside from that, RAWWD conducts health camps as well as various programs in schools from time to time to check for disabilities.
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