Disabled-Friendly Homes Planned by SWO

Disabled-Friendly Homes Planned by SWODisabled-Friendly Homes Planned by SWO

Based on a memorandum of understanding signed by the State Welfare Organization and the Mostazafan Foundation (for the oppressed and disabled), housing will be provided to families with disabled members, supported by the SWO.

“Households with more than two physically challenged members will be entitled to one house that will be constructed based on appropriate standards and facilities for the target group,” said SWO head Anoushiravan Mohseni Bandpei, during a visit to Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari Province to inspect projects underway or completed.

Global standards for disabled-friendly homes generally mandate adaptability, flexibility and simplicity in size and space for approach, and ramps that require low physical effort for wheelchair maneuvering. Wheelchair accessibility is an important criterion in homes for the disabled.

An estimated 8,000 units in cities and 3,000 in rural areas are required, Bandpei said, IRNA reported.

The Cabinet has made amendments to laws that support the rights of the disabled at its last session. The new bill was finalized in 10 chapters and 26 articles and will be presented to the Majlis (parliament) next week.

Noting that July 10-17 is observed as ‘SWO Week’, Bandpei said lesser developed provinces like Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari in southwest Iran are of high priority.

So far, 100,000 houses have been constructed for SWO beneficiaries, of which 53,000 units have been relinquished and 46,000 are close to completion.

The number of people with disabilities across the country has increased by 5% in 2013-14, with 11 million having some kind of disability. Among them 3%  are severely handicapped.

“The rate increases by 40% every year,” Bandpei rued.

 Specialized Services

The organization has reached out to more than five million and has plans to provide disabled people with specialized services in education, besides supportive and rehabilitation assistance.

Statistics show 8% of Iran’s population comprises seniors and 40,000 disabled are added every year. In all, there are 3.3 million severely challenged people, among whom 400,000 live in rural areas.

Bandpei also stressed the need to provide necessary measures to establish centers to support the disabled.

Many schemes have been undertaken to alleviate their problems such as raising public awareness as well as screening of newborns and infants to prevent prospective disabilities like vision and hearing loss.  Nearly 63% of newborns underwent screening last year (ended March 20) and 95% of newborns will be screened this year.