A 40-foot container filled with wheelchairs, walking aids and medical supplies has been presented to the Government of Samoa by L.D.S. Charities; the humanitarian arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The latest shipment contains 300 wheelchairs, with walkers, crutches and canes as well as other medical supplies. This is the eighth year of an ongoing partnership between L.D.S. Charities and the Government of Samoa.
To ensure the gifts get maximum use, there are also spare parts kits for the wheelchairs in the container.
Other supplies includes boxes of face masks, medical gloves and prosthetics kits.
Acting Director General of Health Atoa Dr. Glenn Fatupaito received the container of medical equipment and supplies during a handover ceremony held last week at Motootua.
The partnership, Dr. Fatupaito said, is a great help for the residents of Samoa who cannot afford to purchase a wheelchair and other vital walking aids.
The donation allows the government to save a lot on equipment costs, the Acting DG noted.
Dr. Fatupaito thanked the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints on behalf of the Government of Samoa and ensured Church representatives that the equipment will be well-monitored and distributed fairly.
The container was presented to the Government by Kilapoe Sheppard, Manager of Samoa Welfare and Self-Reliance for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Dr. Kapuana Ainu’u, Welfare & Self-Reliance Manager for Samoa and American Samoa ensured that this partnership with the Government will continue to help in many other ways to support the country’s health care system.
Dr. Ainuu expressed gratitude to all overseas donors for their continuous support.
The handover ceremony was facilitated by Apia Samoa Central Stake President Muagututia H. Jason Joseph.
He emphasised the new commandment of our Savior Jesus Christ who commanded His followers, “To love one another.”
“If you love one another the world will then know that ye are my disciples,” said President Joseph.
“The pure love of Christ sees no boundary or limit. We have to give and to love so everyone will continue to enjoy life no matter what circumstance they’re in.”
He also cited the famous quote from the inaugural address of late U.S. President John F. Kennedy who said: “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
“The Church is doing the best we can to assist the people of Samoa. We would like to support the Government and their efforts to improve the lives of the people of Samoa,” President Joseph said.
“These efforts”, he said, “begin with the individual”.
“Whenever we see an opportunity to serve our fellow men, a friend, a stranger or whoever needs help, we must lend a helping hand. We must go to the rescue to help anyone who needs help. We must obey the Lord when He commanded us to love one another. We must care for each other through small acts of kindness and love,” said President Joseph.
The need for the assistance is growing every year and L.D.S. Charities, through its partnership with the Government, has donated containers of wheelchairs to the Ministry of Health each year since 2014.