U.S. Ambassador in Zambezi Region to advance inclusion of people with disabilities in Namibian society

US Ambassador's visit to Katima Mulilo
U.S Ambassador Thomas Daughton, hands over sports equipment during to the ‘Kutwano Organization of Sports for People with Disabilities’ in Katima Mulilo
USAID/ Namibia

For Immediate Release

Friday, November 18, 2016

Katima Mulilo --- On 14 November 2016, U.S. Ambassador Thomas Daughton handed over sports equipment to the ‘Kutwano Organization of Sports for People with Disabilities’ in Katima Mulilo, Zambezi Region. The items which consist of sports clothing, javelins, shot-puts, discuses, batons, stop watches, special athletics chairs and office equipment to the value of approximately N$250,000, was funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

“People with disabilities want to and can participate in every aspect of daily life, be it professionally, academically, or in sports. Inclusion is every person’s right, and as you know well, disability does not mean inability,” highlighted U.S. Ambassador Daughton at the event.

The equipment has already been put to good use as Kutwano athletes successfully competed in this year’s Nedbank Paralympic Games in South Africa, and further returned with 14 medals from the inter-regional Paralympic Competitions in Oshana Region. With the help of the donated equipment, the organization is currently also preparing for the first-ever inter-constituency Paralympic Cup next month.

Zambezi Region Governor Lawrence Sampofu thanked the U.S. government for its support. “This gesture by the government and the people of US demonstrates the commitment and willingness to uplift the Paralympics standards in our communities,” he said.

The U.S. Ambassador also visited Cheshire Home, a facility that caters for children with disabilities in Katima Mulilo. Twenty-six (26) of the 30 learners residing in the home benefited from a USAID scholarship program of approx. N$1.8 million for Zambezi as well as the Kavango regions, and 24 of them received assistive devices such as wheelchairs and crutches.

During his visit, Ambassador Thomas Daughton together with his wife Melinda Burrell engaged in face-painting and other fun activities with the children, which they enjoyed very much.