Accidents on the roads and at the workplace in Botswana have, more often than not, led to spinal injuries in victims.
Even though there are many people affected by such injuries, there are no facilities in existence to help those affected.
Independent research has shown that over 50 percent of spinal cord patients die within the first year in Botswana because of neglect and improper rehabilitation for patients.
Enabling Botswana, whose first initiative is to raise funds to build phase 1 of the first rehab centre in Botswana, said that it is in Botswana to help support health, education and the environment of Botswana.
Enabling Botswana says that the disabled people in Botswana will in the near future have their own P50 million rehab centre.
They said that once constructed, the centre will be turned over to the management of the Gaborone Disabled Persons Society.
The private initiative, which has decided to partner with other local and international organizations to build and establish the country’s first ever spinal injury rehabilitation centre, is part owned by established actor Colin Salmon, who has had a role in the local series, The Number One Ladies Detective Agency.
Amongst his long list of credentials, he is well known for his roles in three James Bond films and has been voted one of the world‘s 50 most beautiful people by People Magazine.
The Director of Aspect Consulting, Brian O’ Connell, who is also part-founder of Enabling Botswana, said that the center will be a rehabilitation and social center, open to all disabled people in the area.
He said that it will provide a means for disabled people to help integrate themselves back into society through physical rehabilitation and to dramatically improve the quality of their lives as well as serve as a social center, which will host events and promote the arts.
“The center will cost P35 million to build, including construction and fitting out the site with the latest exercise equipment. It will include an indoor basketball court, an indoor swimming pool, a gym and a physiotherapy center. There will also be space for cultural events, a game room, multi-media facilities and living space for people staying on-site,” said O’Connell.
He said that on top of the P35 million, a P15 million pula endowment will ensure that operational costs and upkeep of the site can be covered in perpetuity, thus leading to a total cost of P50 million.
Olly Chibua, who designed the center, said that it will be constructed in Block 8 on a property owned by the Gaborone Disabled Persons Society.