The Bahrain community is being urged to support the low-income amputee population in Thailand by collecting ring pulls from soft drink cans that will be made into artificial limbs for amputees.
The Ring Pull Project was the brainchild of Dubai-based Thai-restaurant owner Poy Booncham, who collects and delivers the ring pulls to the Prosthesis Foundation in Bangkok, Thailand, an organization that provides free prostheses to needy amputees. The project was launched in Bahrain in May 2005 by Rainbow For Kids school principal and co-owner Christine Hasan, and it has steadily grown since then.
Since its inception, more than 400kg (881.85 lb.) of ring pulls, about 400,000, have been collected and sent to Thailand. The first shipment was sent out in February 2006 weighing 90kg (198.42 lb.), and there have since been many more shipments like this one. The goal this year is to rally the support of the community and collect as many ring pulls as possible.
According to an article in the Gulf Daily News, Hasan became aware of the project after reading Booncham’s story in Challenge magazine. She was working with children at the time and encouraged their participation, with positive results.
“I…thought it was such an amazing idea…and something I knew I had to involve myself in,” Hasan said. “Changes in behavior and self-esteem started to rise in the children during the [collection] time. You get a really good feeling knowing you’re helping someone rebuild their future…[even] by putting in the smallest amount of effort.”
The Prosthesis Foundation is spearheading the campaign worldwide. It estimates that more than 3,000 ring pulls are needed to make an artificial leg or an arm.