The inauguration of the camp by the then Honourable Chief Minister Shri Narendra Modi of Gujarat created an awareness in official circles of the need for aids and appliances amongst the poor disabled and would influence public policy in this regard. In his inaugural speech he also stressed on the need for such humanitarian projects through Public/Private Partnership efforts.
While blessing the camp on Sunday 3rd January, 2010 His Holiness the Dalai Lama also stressed on the importance of such projects and how they could bring about a significant change in the lives of the poor. In his customary jovial style he also interacted with some of the disabled during his tour of the camp and its various departments.
Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust, Mumbai in association with and supported by several National and International organizations as well as other well wishers had organized a Mega Mobility Camp for rehabilitation of the physically challenged and hearing impaired at Palitana, in the Bhavnagar district of Gujarat.
The camp stretched over an 18 day period from the 23rd of December, 2009 to the 9th of January, 2010 and was the largest humanitarian project of its kind in the world.
Set up in an over 100,000 square feet of specially erected pandal and auditorium the camp drew an unprecedented response and rehabilitated 16,760 orthopaedically handicapped and another 11,789 hearing impaired thus giving a new lease of life to 28,549 poorest of the poor disabled of Bhavnagar and adjoining districts.
The orthopaedically handicapped beneficiaries got free Callipers for the polio afflicted, Jaipur foot for the amputees, Splints and braces as well as Tricycles, Wheelchairs, Crutches and Walkers. The uniqueness of the project was that a patient who came to the camp in the morning was screened, measured and the prosthetic fabricated and fitted by early evening when the patient left for home in free vehicles provided by Ratna Nidhi Charitable Trust.
The hearing impaired patients underwent an audiology test in a custom made mobile van and were given appropriate hearing aids.
Over 100 technical personnel ably assisted by over 150 volunteers from USA, UK and India toiled for over 14 to 16 hours every day but were amply rewarded to see the smiles on those who could walk on their own artificial limbs or the elderly who could now hear what they could earlier only see. The many disabled who got tricycles had their dreams come true as they could now attend schools and colleges, go for work or pursue some vocation.
At the above camp we were privileged to have helped the following disabled: