Little Eden Society’s 7th annual CEO Wheelchair campaign rolls into Cell C Waterfall

In a poignant display of solidarity and empathy, the CEO of Cell C Jorge Mendes immersed himself in the seventh annual Little Eden Society CEO Wheelchair Campaign on March 11 in Waterfall.

By Comfort Makhanya – Midrand Reporter

This initiative, aimed at fostering awareness and understanding of the challenges faced by individuals with mobility impairments, saw Mendes spending a day navigating life in a wheelchair.

Set against the theme ‘Ride a Mile in My Wheels’, the annual campaign coincides with Intellectual Disability Awareness Month, unfolding throughout March.

Mendes, known for his dedication to diversity and inclusion, shared his motivations for participating in the campaign.

“It is important to walk in someone else’s shoes, so to speak,” he explained. “True diversity and inclusion go beyond tick-box exercises. It is about understanding and experiencing the daily realities faced by others.”

Reflecting on his experience, Mendes recounted the eye-opening moments and challenges encountered throughout the day.

From navigating ramps and doorways to grappling with practical tasks like carrying a cup of coffee, Mendes gained a newfound appreciation for the obstacles faced by wheelchair users in their daily lives.

While acknowledging the efforts made to meet accessibility standards, Mendes emphasised the need for practicality and ease of use.

“Meeting specifications is one thing, but true accessibility means ensuring that individuals living with disabilities can fully function throughout the day.”

Throughout the day, Mendes received support and assistance from his colleagues at Cell C. Despite the initial discomfort and challenges, Mendes remained committed to gaining a deeper understanding of the realities faced by individuals with disabilities.

In discussing the campaign’s impact, Mendes highlighted the importance of fostering a culture of empathy and inclusivity.

“Experiencing life from a wheelchair offers immersion into someone else’s reality. It is a humbling experience that underscores the need for meaningful change and inclusivity in our society.”

As Mendes concludes his participation in the CEO Wheelchair Campaign, he extends a challenge to fellow CEOs to join him in this endeavour.

By raising awareness and advocating for practical solutions, Mendes hopes to create a more inclusive environment for individuals with disabilities in the workplace and beyond.

In joining the ranks of those who have participated in the campaign, Mendes reaffirms his commitment to driving positive change and fostering a more inclusive society for all.

The CEO of the society Xelda Rohrbeck said they aim to raise R1.5m through the campaign towards the care of Little Eden residents by March 31 this year.



Related Posts