The Gauteng Department of Health has recently launched eight new wheelchair repair workshops in the Province, giving a number of entrepreneurs the opportunity to start their own businesses.
Malutha Tshivhase, Deputy Director of Disabilities said the wheelchair repair project costing R1,6 m was put forward to keep the wheels rolling.
Malutha said all provinces have bought into the concept by facilitating contracts between local Provincial hospitals and workshops.
Shadvaal workshop, situated in the Vaal Triangle had had a lot of difficulties but contracts are under way and the project is now sustainable, said Malutha Tshivhase. Sebokeng is the referring hospital.
Meshaks, the man behind the success story of the Mesh-Lind Workshop in the central Wits region, with referrals from Chris Hani Baragwaneth Hospital, said 291 wheelchairs have been repaired this year. His message to others is never to give up and always treat your customers with dignity.
Andrew Louw of Golden Gate Workshop on the West Rand, with referrals from Leratong Hospital, said his life changed when a community based worker knocked on his door to approach him to become an entrepreneur.