VHP created a partnership with St. Luke's Orthopedic and Trauma Hospital in Eldoret, Kenya to provide upper-limb prosthetic care to amputees across Kenya. In February, 2020 VHP team members traveled to Kenya to train St. Luke's staff on the 3D printing, assembling, and fitting of the Victoria Hand and the LimbForge arm. This is the 8th country that VHP is working in!
The project in Kenya began as a pilot project which highlighted two patients from Kenya, Ijabu and Bin-Amin. We created short videos of these patients (below) to show the need for prosthetic care in Kenya. During our training trip to Kenya, we were able to fit both Ijabu and Bin-Amin with their own Victoria Hands! They were so happy to receive the hands. Right away they were able to do regain function and their self-esteem improved. Bin-Amin was also able to write for the first time using the PAW (Personal Assistive Writing) device, which was designed by undergraduate engineering students at Uvic. Both Bin-Amin and Ijabu were excited to get home to use their hands and show them off to their friends.
We look forward to helping more people across Kenya!
Ijabu is a young girl from Mandera, a part of Eastern Kenya near Somalia. Ijabu had a boil form on her hand and the doctors recommended she have her hand removed. Since prosthetic care is very expensive she has had to learn to only use her left hand in her daily life. Doing tasks requiring two hands was very difficult or impossible for her. The Victoria Hand has helped her complete tasks requiring two hands, and raise her self-confidence.
Please watch the video below to learn more about Ijabu.
Bin-Amin is a young boy from Northern Kenya who had an unfortunate accident when playing with his friends. He fell onto burning goat dung and had serious burns. This resulted in him losing his hands and part of his feet. Bin-Amin was transported to a hospital in South Eastern Kenya where he was able to receive care for the burns. Bin-Amin's life has forever changed and he requires help from others in his daily life. After receiving the Victoria Hand, Bin-Amin is more independent and does not need to rely on others as much.
Please watch the video below to learn more about Bin-Amin's story.
The Pilot Project
We want to demonstrate the need for prosthetic care in Kenya by highlighting the stories of Ijabu and Bin-Amin. This will be done through a pilot project occurring in 3 phases. This includes phase 1 where we showed the need, phase 2 to demonstrate our capabilities to help, and phase 3 to show the on-going positive effects.
Phase 1: Demonstrate the Need
VHP has worked with local Kenyan filmmakers to document Ijabu's and Bin-Amin's lives without a prosthetic device. The videos above show them doing day-to-day tasks and the difficulties that occur. We have shown the need for care in developing countries such as Kenya. We are using these videos to raise funds to travel down to Kenya to provide amputees with prosthetic devices. We have completed phase 1 and hope to be able to move on to phase 2 soon. If you would like to donate to help us go to Kenya and provide them with prosthetic devices please donate.
Phase 2: Fit Patients with the Victoria Hand
Following phase 1 and fundraising, we will to travel down to Kenya to fit Ijabu, Bin-Amin, and two other patients with the Victoria Hand. When we travel to Kenya we will work with the local clinicians to fit the patients with custom-made Victoria Hands. We will also work with local technicians to create custom forearm sockets using 3D scanning, and 3D print the sockets on-site. This will help to show the capabilities of our teams and our ability to expand to new countries to help amputees.
Phase 3: On-going Positive Impact
This will help highlight how the amputees have become empowered with a prosthesis. We will follow-up with Ijabu and Bin-Amin 1-2 months after they have been fit with the Victoria Hand. We hope to see that their lives have improved and they can use the hand to do things they couldn't do before.
Finally, we will combine all 3 phases to create a full video. This full video will be used to show how we can provide an end-to-end solution to help those in need in Kenya. Please help spread the message about the pilot project in Kenya so we can help more amputees in need of care.
 M. Marino, S. Pattni, M. Greenberg and A. Miller, "Access to prosthetic devices in developing countries: Pathways and challenges", 2015. Available: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/285591611_Access_to_prosthetic_devices_in_developing_countries_Pathways_and_challenges. [Accessed 28 June 2019].