- StandProud/ACDF PROJECT
- DISABILITY TYPES
- WHO WE ARE
Welcome to StandProud!
Formerly International Polio Victims Response Committee (IPVRC)
StandProud is a U.S.-registered, tax-exempt, not-for-profit charity created to provide international financial support for selected community organizations in developing countries which:
StandProud believes that
RECENT VIDEO OF STANDPROUD BY HAND UP CONGO
PARTNERSHIP WITH ACDF
At the present time, StandProud is concentrating on providing rehabilitative services for disabled youth in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo), where it collaborates closely with partner organization ACDF (l´Association Congolaise "Debout et Fier," meaning The Congolese Association "Standing and Proud").
In DR Congo, widespread poliomyelitis ("polio"), as well as other diseases and ignorance of safe medical practices, have left an unusually high number of people with partially or fully paralyzed legs.
In other countries, people suffering from lower-limb paralysis can often gain increased mobility by using canes in combination with orthopedic leg braces. The population of DR Congo, however, is one of the poorest in Africa, and parents with disabled children are rarely able to pay for the extra treatment and equipment these children require to achieve maximum mobility. A group of concerned disabled Congolese youth organized to form ACDF to begin responding to this problem in January 1999.
With StandProud support, ACDF currently maintains brace-crafting facilities in six cities in DR Congo: Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, Kalemie, Goma, Bunia and Butembo. The outermost of these sites are located approximately 1000 miles from each other and correspond to the west, southeast and northeast corners of the country.
Additionally, ACDF, with StandProud support, maintains "rehabilitation homes" adjacent to its brace shops where beneficiaries stay while being treated and learning to use their new equipment. These residential facilities provide an important opportunity for beneficiaries to give each other moral support, gain confidence and reduce self-consciousness.
As there has been a tendency in the Congo to stigmatize and segregate persons with physical disabilities, as well as to minimize their potential to make significant social, cultural and economic contributions, StandProud and ACDF supplement their brace-making activities with an education program in which parents of disabled children are taught the importance of sending them to regular school along with their non-disabled siblings (educational "mainsteaming," as opposed to the segregation of disabled youth and their automatic relegation to vocational curricula) and provide some minimal assistance with the payment of school fees to encourage this.