June 2016 Newsletter
12,000th Wheelchair Presented
Ron and Sharon spent 12 days in Nigeria in May, following a tour of South Africa. They joined Ayuba in three wheelchair presentations to polio survivors, the first in Jengre, an hour north of Jos, in a large church meeting hall. The second was at a school for special needs children in Langtang North, three hours south of Jos. School desks made in the shop were given, along with 15 wheelchairs and two computers. (This year, the nation-wide test given to seniors which determines admission to the university, was by computer only, so students without computer skills are out of luck.)
First White Visitors in 55 Years!
Ron and Sharon were the first white visitors to the large and remote mountain-top village of Zuwakal in 55 years, where they presented 15 wheelchairs, school desks for 60 students, two computers and a small generator. The old chief remembered white missionaries coming about 1960 when he was a small boy, but none since. There are now six churches in the area and a large primary and secondary school. The 4 hour trip included one hour up a hand built bush track, 4-wheel drive only. The chief presented Ron with a 4 ft. antique hunting spear and club, and Sharon was given 20 liters of pure palm oil, the village’s main source of outside income.
Deaf School News
We continue to make improvements in the lives of the 430 students at the Plateau State School for the Deaf, who were found to be suffering the most abject poverty and government neglect we had ever seen. In November we installed a diesel generator and lights for all the hostels, the first electricity they had had in six years. The staff reports the amount of illness has dropped dramatically, because now with electricity, the bore hole pump is supplying the school with good water. Before, students were drinking out of the nearby polluted stream. In March, Ayuba presented 35 steel tables for the dining hall, 70 benches, 150 bunk beds and school desks for 135 students, all made in our wheelchair shop. (There was not a stick of furniture in the dining hall and most of the students were sleeping on the floor.)
On May 4th, we presented the last of the 300 mattresses needed for the new bunk beds. We also donated 10 used computers and a petrol generator for a new computer center. (Computer skills are a must for deaf students, whose employment opportunities are extremely limited. The university entrance exam is now only given by computer.) A student teacher who knows sign language and computers (a rare combination!) is running the center. We hired a tractor to plow a hectare (2 1/2 acres) of the school’s land so that each student can have a plot to grow food for the school. They had never done this before! Students will be graded on how their crop did. Ayuba reports all the crops are planted: corn, soy beans, sorghum and potatoes. The goat shelter is finished and 14 goats have been purchased, as well as rabbits. The 125 fruit trees are planted.
A May 10th windstorm did severe damage. Ayuba is pressuring the government to make repairs.
Special thanks for all the generous gifts that have made these projects possible. Over 12,000 polio survivors have had their lives transformed by the gift of mobility. Over 1500 blind students have received folding white canes or digital voice recorders. The 430 deaf students have seen big improvements to their lives and school. Watch Ron’s video of this trip. Please consider a gift to the Wheelchair Fund. Where else can you transform a life for $150?
Please help these polio survivors with a gift to Wheelchairs for Nigeria
Send your tax-deductible gift to Wheelchairs for Nigeria, 1542 Palm Ave SW. Seattle, WA 98116 or give online. Please consider an automatic monthly gift, as some of our supporters do, through bill pay at your bank or PayPal.
$150 transforms a life!