Stevie Wonder -- "Make It Accessible"

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Stevie Wonder made a heartfelt plea during his performance at Glastonbury asking for increased accessibility for disabled people.

Stevie Wonder made a heartfelt plea during his performance at Glastonbury asking for increased accessibility for disabled people.

As the final headline performer at the 40th Anniversary of the Somerset Festival, Stevie Wonder made an emotional plea to the audience saying “I want you to encourage the world to make things more accessible for those who are physically challenged. Make it more accessible. Let there be nowhere that I can’t go being blind, that someone cannot go being deaf, someone cannot go being paraplegic or quadriplegic. Make it accessible so that we can celebrate the world as well as you can.” Stevie Wonder is a United Nations Messenger of Peace and has often spoken out for the rights of disabled people. He recently asked computer games manufacturers to consider the blind and to make games more accessible. He has also asked mobile phone companies to consider ways of increasing accessibility.

CBM, the overseas disability charity, believe it is vital for disabled people to have the same opportunities as non disabled people. CBM acts upon the needs and rights of people with disabilities and supports the provision of more than 900 projects in more than 90 countries. It is estimated that CBM reaches out to 23 million people worldwide across Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, and South America.

Wherever possible, it is CBM’s aim to provide these services within their communities and therefore Community-Based Rehabilitation programmes are provided where possible to leave communities with a legacy of skills.

Our focus is on the prevention and treatment of diseases wherever possible, and on education and rehabilitation so that people with disability can be included into their society as equals and lead a largely independent life.

CBM always works in partnership with national and local organisations and provides an important advocacy link for people who have a sensory or physical disability, to their respective governments.

CBM helps children reach their full potential
CBM has been at the frontline, supporting, protecting and encouraging children with disabilities since it began in 1908. This was when Ernst Jacob Christoffel (1876-1955), opened the first home for people who were blind, hearing impaired and those with physical disabilities in Malatya, Turkey.

In 1996 CBM UK was established. For more info visit: http://www.cbmuk.org.uk or

About CBM

CBM works with over 700 partners in over 90 countries and reaches out to more than 23 million people each year. CBM is recognised by the World Health Organisation and supports over 800 projects.

CBM, the overseas disability charity, works to improve the lives of people with disabilities in the world’s poorest communities. Our goal is to empower people to change their own lives. Based on its Christian values and over 100 years of professional expertise and experience, CBM addresses poverty as a cause and consequence of disability, and works in partnership to create a society for all. CBM helps people regardless of their religious beliefs.

For further information please contact:
CBM Tel: 01223 484700 Viv Ayas (mobile: 07986 606025) or Gill Godber (mobile: 0771 511 3017)

CBM Information For Editors
What We Do
CBM acts upon the needs and rights of people with disabilities and supports the provision of more than 800 projects in over 90 countries. It is estimated that CBM reaches out each year to over 23 million people worldwide across Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America.
Wherever possible, it is the aim to establish access to these services within the communities and to empower communities to change their own lives.
Cause & Prevention
Our focus is on the prevention and treatment of diseases wherever possible, and on education and rehabilitation so that people with disability can be included into their society as equals and lead a largely independent life.
CBM always works in partnership with national and local organisations and provides an important advocacy link between the blind, deaf and physically disabled and their respective governments. http://www.cbmuk.org.uk
Children with physical disabilities

CBM focuses on activities which prevent and treat diseases that can lead to disability in children. Also, as a result of negative attitudes, prejudices and stigma held about disability, children with disabilities in low-income countries are often marginalised and cannot access education and healthcare services. This can result in exclusion from future employment.

  •     Children with physical disabilities are three times more likely to die in childhood than their non-disabled peers

Why are there so many children with physical disabilities?

There are an estimated 2 million children in low-income countries with modest to severe physical disabilities. Many of these children have preventable or treatable conditions.

The main causes of physical disabilities found in children are:

  •     Congenital disabilities: Birth defects – such a clubfoot or cleft palate - are common, severely disabling if not treated, and yet easily cured if identified early.
  •     Cerebral Palsy (CP) – CP is more common in low-income countries due to improper birthing techniques, malnutrition and malaria. Supporting and enabling the family to use physiotherapy with their child who has CP, can vastly improve their movement and muscle control.
  •     Infections which are not diagnosed and treated early, such as TB, can result in severe damage to bones and joints resulting in physical disability.
  •     Accidents leading to poorly treated and set fractures that have not healed in the correct position.
  •     Burns that result in scarring and contractures of skin and joints.

What does CBM do to reduce the incidence of physical disabilities in children?

CBM intervenes to forestall conditions that lead to disability. It offers surgery, physiotherapy, and orthopaedic equipment to improve the mobility of children with physical disabilities and get them back on the move again. This involves:

  •     Creating awareness and providing health education;
  •     A focus on prevention of disability, including promotion of better quality and more accessible ante-natal services;
  •     Community-based rehabilitation (CBR) to assist individuals with physical disabilities and their families to access health and education services and livelihood opportunities;
  •     Early detection to identify children who need treatment, for example, children with club foot and cleft lip;
  •     Early intervention to promote good treatment of fractures, burns and bone infections;                                    
  •     Cost-effective and good quality interventions, providing specialist surgical services for common and treatable conditions.

CBM works with skilled national staff and where necessary will provide partners with specialist co-workers to develop training programmes for local level staff.

All press enquiries: CBM Tel: 01223 484700
Gill Godber (mobile: 0771 511 3017) or Viv Ayas (mobile: 07986 606025)

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Viv Ayas

Gill Godber
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