Sakura Wheelchair Project


About Sakura Wheelchair Project

1. Background to the establishment of the organization

Since the early 2000s, we have continued to send used electric wheelchairs to leaders of people with disabilities in Asian countries as part of a project to support people with disabilities in cooperation with people with disabilities and wheelchair manufacturers. Since the earthquake in northern Pakistan, the need for wheelchairs has increased, especially for electric wheelchairs, so the NPO Sakura Wheelchair Project was established to specialize in the provision of electric wheelchairs. The Sakura Wheelchair Project was established in 2011 with the cooperation of organizations for people with disabilities, wheelchair industry groups, and Pakistani volunteers living in Japan, with the aim of supporting independent living for people with disabilities in Asia, Africa, and other countries.

First wheelchair made in Pakistan with support from Japan

2. What is Sakura Wheelchair Project?

In Japan, more than 5,000 electric wheelchairs are discarded every year. And while many are still usable, they are also a waste of resources and a problem for the environment. –If it can be used effectively in countries that need it, many possibilities will open up. Therefore, in our project, we receive used wheelchairs from users all over the country, and we are currently sending them to disabled people in the countries that request them, mainly to Pakistan.

However, when a complicated electric wheelchair breaks down, there is no place to repair it or parts, and it becomes bulky garbage. In addition, even though many Asian countries and NGOs provide support by donating wheelchairs, if there is no way to obtain parts, repair techniques, or fitting techniques tailored to each disabled person, wheelchairs may not fit properly and cause secondary disabilities. There are many cases where the equipment cannot be repaired or is no longer usable. This project aims to help people with disabilities learn maintenance techniques that are suitable for people with disabilities in each country, maintain them themselves, and use them to help them become independent.