Early one morning in late October, members of the Rotary Club of Cheongju Dream, Korea, gathered with volunteers at Mushimcheon River Park, Cheongju, Korea. Excitement filled the air as visually-impaired individuals, young and old, arrived with social worker companions for a four-hour tandem bicycle ride.
By Anna Tumanova, president, Rotary Club of Moscow Center, Russian Federation
I remember how impatiently I waited for my Varvara to run. I waited for my daughter’s first step for 10 months. But there are parents who wait for years. And there are those who will never experience this happiness.
What is it like for a young person who can’t lean on his own feet? How do they see the world? What is their social circle? Are they confined to the four walls of a small apartment, where they are heroically dragged along by their mother, whose life begins and ends with a child with special needs.
By Ken Masson, President, The Rotary Club of World Disability Advocacy
The need for human rights for people with disabilities is worldwide. From the largest to the smallest countries, there are opportunities for Rotary to improve the dignity, respect, and quality of lives for people with disabilities. That is why we chartered the Rotary Club of World Disability Advocacy. We saw so many possibilities of what Rotary could do.
As a polio survivor (age three, left with partial paralysis of one leg which did not grow as much as the other leg), all of my life I have had moments when I turned to see a child trying to imitate my walk. It was always disconcerting, and of late, just a little surprising, as when you realize toilet paper is stuck to your shoe and trailing along behind. When I matured, I could smile at the pantomime, and think, “Do I really walk like that??!” Continue reading →
One of the first misconceptions that confronted me as a handicapped child was that people – children, adults, everyone – would often say, “I saw your picture on the March of Dimes poster!!” The March of Dimes was a campaign initiated to pay for polio vaccinations and patient care. Most of the patients were young children, who were the most prone to severe aspects of the disease. People were asked to send in “even a dime” and there were coin collection placards put out in stores, churches, gas stations, anywhere that people might be able to spare a dime. (A dime in 1950 would be worth about ninety cents in 2018.) Continue reading →