Persons with Physical Disabilities are often unable to access proper physical rehabilitation services, especially the ones living in places affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence. This leads to reduced mobility and reduces social and economic integration in their own and host communities. As a result, many are forced into poverty and/or inability to achieve their full potential in society.

In general, ICRC Physical Rehabilitation Programs (PRP) are planned and implemented to strengthen the physical rehabilitation services offered in the country concerned. The ICRC PRP has been supporting Iran Red Crescent Society Physical Rehabilitation Centers (IRCS PRC) in assisting vulnerable individuals with motor disabilities in Mashhad and the surrounding areas of Khorasan Razavi province since 2016. In Mashhad, the Society for Recovery Support (SRS) assists in identifying, screening, and giving Occupational Therapy treatments.

In 2021, the program expanded to Zahedan, Sistan and Baluchestan provinces to meet the increasing demand for services for vulnerable Afghan people with disabilities. Pars Development Activists (PDA) in Zahedan assists in identifying and screening the possible beneficiaries.

The PRP team provides on-the-job support and formal training with external trainers to ensure that the services provided are of the highest quality. Through an interdisciplinary approach, the PRP team prescribes the best service for each individual, including exercises, prostheses, braces, wheelchairs, walking frames, or crutches. All prescribed services are provided free of charge, and the PRP can also reimburse transport costs in special circumstances.

Most of the beneficiaries are persons who had an amputation of a limb due to injury or disease and persons who suffer from brain damage or neurological diseases.

Since the upheaval in Afghanistan (in August 2021) the number of newly fled Afghans, including people with disabilities, to Iran is growing and the need for these services surged hugely. Having access to these services through the Physical Rehabilitation Program can make a life-changing difference for this vulnerable population group.

Wheelchair training for beneficiaries, Mashhad, 2021

Screen sessions of people with disabilities, Zahedan 2021