Disability and rehabilitation

What's disability to me? Faustina's story

Video featuring Faustina Urassa from Tanzania promoting wheelchair provision


Portrait of Faustin Urassa from United Republic of Tanzania

Publication details

Publication date: 2012
Languages: English



On 9 June 2011, the World Report on Disability will be launched by the WHO Director-General in New York, USA. This document, co-published with the World Bank, will provide new disability prevalence estimates, identify the needs of people with disabilities, and highlight what works to ensure their access to health and rehabilitation services, education, and employment among others.

In preparation for the launch, WHO is promoting debate on disability on its Facebook page using the theme "What's disability to me?". Four short videos, featuring women with disabilities from Tanzania, Lebanon, United Kingdom and Bolivia, explore how these individuals have faced and overcome barriers.

The first film features Faustina Urassa, an employee of the Kilimanjaro Association of Spinal Injury in Moshi, Tanzania. In her work she promotes living independently and including people with disabilities in the lives of their communities. Her passion is wheelchair provision, because as she says "If you train somebody to be independent, but you don't give him or her an appropriate wheelchair, it's like you have done nothing."

Today 65 million people worldwide need wheelchairs, but only 5-15% of people can access the devices they need. Promoting access to rehabilitation, including assistive devices such as wheelchairs, is a key goal of WHO.

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