Charity to Donate 50 Prosthetic Hands

By Nobel Zaw 20 April 2015

RANGOON — The Dr. Saw Mya Aung Foundation announced that it will provide 50 amputees in Burma with prosthetic hands that have the ability to seize and hold objects.

Tin May Aung, president of the local charity, said on Monday that the prostheses were donated by a Rotary Club in the United States.

“We have 50 hands and when we get 50 applications we will announce when and where we will distribute them,” she said, adding that so far the organization had received 25 applications.

She said the organization would select applicants based on their needs, such as whether they had lost a right or a left hand, and whether in each case the device is a good fit, as it can only be fitted on a person who has lost his hand less than 5 inches below the elbow.

The hands can seize and hold light objects, Tin May Aung said, adding that for those who lost a hand receiving the prosthesis was of great importance. “Some people cry with joy because they can handle things again,” she said. “I feel delighted when they are so happy.”

She added that most amputees lost their hands during harvest accidents when machines are used to process crops.

Between 2013 and 2015, the charity distributed 50 prosthetic hands in western Burma’s Arakan State, where it is most active. The organization also provides impoverished communities there with donated LED lights, wells and free medical treatment.

The foundation is named after the late Arakanese politician Saw Mya Aung, who won a seat during the 1990 election but was subsequently imprisoned for years by the former military regime.