UCP Wheels for Humanity projects span the globe. Read current and past project highlights below.
Current Project Highlights
Global wheelchair provision with CLASP
A program of UCP Wheels for Humanity, CLASP (Consolidating Logistics for Assistive Technology Supply & Provision) is a USAID-funded supply chain solution that increases access to high-quality, affordable assistive products, and promotes appropriate provision globally.
CLASP serves as a global distributor of high-quality wheelchairs and other assistive products. Through its centralized procurement hub in Shanghai, China, CLASP purchases, warehouses, consolidates and transports assistive products from a consortium of manufacturers and ships directly to service providers worldwide. CLASP solves the long-standing procurement frustration experienced by governments and humanitarian organizations by providing increased responsiveness, broader market access, and a wide range of products for wheelchair providers and suppliers.
Since 2014, CLASP has shipped more than 30,000 assistive products to service providers in more than 30 countries, including some of the most remote locations in the world.
For more information, please visit clasphub.org.
Strengthening Rehabilitation Services within Health Systems (SRSHS)
SRSHS is a USAID-funded project launched in 2019 in Ukraine and Tajikistan with the aim of improving rehabilitation services and increasing access to those services through demand generation activities. The SRSHS project is aligned with the WHO’s Rehab2030 Agenda, and the project engages national and regional policymakers to support adaptation of global rehabilitation service standards to local contexts.
In Ukraine, where UCPW has worked since 2002, the SRSHS project extends the work that UCP Wheels led under the USAID-funded TEAM Ukraine project, which involved increasing access to economic opportunities for people with disabilities through job skills and business development training; expanding the provision of assistive technology; delivering medical/physical rehabilitation services to people with disabilities, including physical therapy, psycho-social support, and independence skills training; and training and developing standards for rehabilitation service personnel including neurologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and speech therapists. The SRSHS project continues to support this facility-level standards development for treating a range of diagnoses, including stroke, spinal cord injury and traumatic brain injury, to ensure that patients—many of whom were injured in the ongoing conflict with Russia on Ukraine’s eastern border—can get consistent, quality care.
UCP Wheels is supporting three hospitals to become centers of excellence that will serve as learning sites for other hospitals throughout the country and the post-Soviet region. These hospitals have been teamed with local universities to launch clinical placement programs that will give the next generation of clinicians the opportunity to learn hands-on with the health personnel we’ve trained.
In Tajikistan, UCPW is currently working with the Tajik government and a team of experts (in partnership with World Physiotherapy) to develop the country’s very first academic curriculum for physical therapy. Once we’ve completed this entry level program and it launches at the Republican Medical College in 2021, Tajikistan will have the capacity to locally train its first class of physical therapists, exponentially increasing access to care for Tajik children and adults in need.
Past Project Highlights
Wheelchair service delivery development in Indonesia
UCP Wheels has been working in Indonesia for more than 10 years, making it the first organization of its kind in the country to provide appropriately fitted wheelchairs for children and adults. UCP Wheels for Humanity founded UCP Roda Untuk Kemanusiaan (UCP RUK) in Yogyakarta— a province on the island of Java that represents 3.6 million people—to develop a scalable service delivery model for wheelchairs that can serve as a pilot program for the government of Indonesia to develop its own provision system for wheelchairs and other kinds of AT. The first several years of our programming focused on developing local clinical skills, manufacturing pediatric wheelchairs, and providing wheelchairs directly and through partners in Java, Bali and Sumatra. Since 2016, we've worked with the Ministry of Social Affairs to pilot the inclusion of wheelchairs within the local social insurance system in Yogyakarta province. UCP RUK manages an AT hub in Yogyakarta, where it oversees the procurement, preparation and dispatch of wheelchairs, and trains local health workers to meet WHO guidelines for wheelchair service. Since launching programming in 2009, UCP Wheels for Humanity and UCP RUK have provided more than 12,600 wheelchairs and mobility devices and trained 1,000 people how to select, modify and adjust the right wheelchair for each individual. UCP RUK continues to work with the Ministries of Health and Social Affairs to provide technical, clinical and policy advisement in the implementation of this system. This pilot is proving to be a model for government and civil society that can be scaled to serve the 2.64 million Indonesians in need of wheelchairs.
UCP RUK has now matured into a standalone organization, which UCP Wheels for Humanity continues to mentor.
For more information, please visit ucpruk.org.
Wheelchair Users Voice research project
UCP Wheels led Wheelchair User’s Voice (WUV), a far-reaching project funded by Google.org as one of the ‘big ideas that use technology to expand opportunity and independence for people with disabilities’. It was funded under Google’s Impact Challenge – Disabilities. Read more here.
Wheelchair User’s Voice generated key information that large donors and governments can use to bring more appropriate wheelchairs to users. WUV studied wheelchair users in their everyday lives, gathering information from data logger sensors fitted to wheelchairs, user feedback via text message questionnaires, and person to person surveys. The pilot stage of the project took place in Bali, Indonesia, and the full study was conducted in El Salvador. The data was used to evaluate the quality, durability, and performance of six different types of wheelchairs, and the impact on users’ quality of life, health, economic, and social participation. The outcomes of this project are forthcoming, but are set to transform how humanitarian organizations deliver wheelchairs that meet their beneficiaries’ and governments unique needs.
Wheelchair User's Voice is a ground-breaking research project funded by Google.org under the Google Impact Challenge 2015 that uses technology to expand opportunity and independence for people with disabilities.
To learn more about the project, watch our WUV Research Study video.