The CARES Initiative
In most developing countries, full inclusion of people with disabilities is still a distant dream. Those in need lack access to education, equipment, and employment, and rehabilitative services often simply do not exist.
EquallyAble is now working to make this dream a reality with its state-of-the-art CARES (Centers for Advancement, Rehabilitative Empowerment, and Support) Centers.These Centers will bring together under one roof all the services and support necessary to empower people with disabilities to lead independent,productive lives with honor and dignity.
Since 2001, EquallyAble has cared about empowering people with disabilities. We’ve cared by providing thousands of wheelchairs and assistive devices to those trapped in their homes without them. We’ve cared by helping start hundreds of small businesses for people to support themselves. We’ve cared by bridging gaps for children to get to school. Thanks to your support, we’ve changed the lives of tens of thousands of individuals with disabilities in 12 countries, one life at a time.
But the challenge we face is so much larger. At least 350 million individuals with disabilities live in areas where support services are not available. 80% of them are unemployed, and 30 million of them are children not in school.
While we’ve come a long way, our work has just started. The lessons we learned and the best practices we used informed us that we needed to do something more to magnify the impact of our work. We needed to care for people with disabilities in ways that no one had done before. We needed to create a disruptive model that ended the inefficiencies and gaps of the multiple delivery points for what services were available for people with disabilities.
Thus, we’ve created the new EquallyAble CARES Centers. This visionary concept will for the first time bring together under one roof all the services and support necessary for those with disabilities to become independent, productive participants in their communities. And the Centers will be staffed by people with disabilities, providing employment and understanding of the needs of those they serve.
CARES is a five-year, $5 million project which will be completed in three phases:
Phase 1 (2 years, $2 million)
- Build the Centers
- Assist with equipment, care, and rehabilitation
- Provide orthotics / prosthetics; hearing and vision aids; newborn hearing testing; and, physical, occupational, and cognitive therapies for Autism and related cognitive disabilities
Phase 2 (1.5 years, $1.5 million)
- Expand the Centers to provide vocational and technical training for establishing small social impact businesses that are aligned with individual’s abilities and skills
Phase 3 (1.5 years, $1.5 million)
- Expand the Centers to provide live training, motivational coaching, and mentoring to individuals and families with disabilities
- Identify role models, teach awareness, add educational opportunities and programs