BANDA ACEH, Indonesia – Dozens of people in Indonesia’s northwestern Aceh province received prosthetic legs on Tuesday as part of a government program to improve their mobility.
The Aceh government’s Social Service Agency has been running the prosthetic leg program since 2006 and every year in the provincial capital of Banda Aceh it replaces old artificial legs or donates new ones, which cost around $300 each.
About 60 people gathered at the Social Agency office in downtown Banda Aceh Tuesday to receive their new limb, an epa journalist reports.
Most recipients came to the office from rural districts of the province, with the government prioritizing prosthetic supplies based on the districts most in need.
Victims of the 2004 tsunami, which damaged Aceh the most of all regions affected by the disaster, make up most recipients of the prosthetic legs, followed by people wounded in Aceh’s 28-year insurgency, and those injured in accidents.
Ibrahim, a 45-year-old pedicab driver, had his leg amputated following a traffic accident three years ago, which put his family’s future in doubt as he was the sole income earner.
But through the Social Agency program he received a prosthetic leg and could resume working.
“I’m very lucky to get this assistance,” he told epa, as he showed off his latest artificial leg which replaced an older one. “My new leg is very comfortable, more comfortable than the previous one.”