When the Republic of Moldova declared independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the country lost a significant part of its infrastructure. The extent of this loss became personal when some years later, Victoria’s mother needed surgery in a local Moldovan hospital.

 

At the time, the thin, stained mattresses on rigid iron beds, the chipped tiles, the lack of hot water, and the blood-pressure meter with three holes in it, seemed normal to Victoria. It was only a few months later when she started to work in a UK hospital on the Isle of Wight that she realised just how very different a modern hospital could be.

 

UK hospitals spend millions of pounds each year updating their equipment so that they can stay at the cutting edge of healthcare. The replaced equipment either goes into storage at great expense, or the hospital pays for it to be taken away and disposed of.

 

Victoria then thought of that poorly equipped Moldovan hospital with its leaky blood pressure meters, and said, “We must be able to do something to get that equipment to where it is needed.” The hospitals she spoke to agreed, and that is how MAD-Aid was formed.

 

And that wasn’t all.

 

When she was young, Victoria believed Moldova had no children with disabilities. They were there, she later discovered; but they were invisible.

 

Because mobility aids are almost non-existent, children with mobility challenges cannot access education – unless their parents can afford to pay for private tuition in their home. These isolated children become isolated adults, trapped at home alone for long periods, and lacking the support they need.

 

And so MAD-Aid sought ways to help end this isolation, by improving mobility, and by creating education and health centres.

 

Click for more detailed information about MAD-Aid’s programs.