A PROFILE: PHILIPPINE FOUNDATION FOR THE REHABILITATION OF THE DISABLED (PFRD)
The PFRD was organized in 1949 when Filipinos were first being made aware of disability and was registered with the SEC on February 10, 1950.
PFRD virtually launched the rehabilitation movement in the Philippines and provided a forum for the coordination of rehab activities nationwide. It became the first local organization to be admitted as an affiliate member of Rehabilitation International (RI), a federation of organizations in more than 80 countries worldwide.
PFRD has the distinction of being the oldest non-governmental organization (NGO) that has worked for the last 67 years to address the needs of disabled persons.
Back in January 16 to 20, 1978, the Second International Conference on Legislation Concerning the Disabled was hosted in the Philippines by PFRD as Rehabilitation International's (RI) national affiliate.
It was during this conference that then Pres. Marcos signed P.D. No. 1509 which created the National Commission Concerning Disabled Persons (NCCDP). It was tasked to prepare and adopt an integrated and comprehensive long-term National Rehabilitation Plan (NRP).
The PFRD served as the Commission's Secretariat to assist the NCCDP Board in the implementation of its objectives and functions. This arrangement stayed in effect until P.D. 1509 was amended by P.D. 1761 on January 4, 1981.
When Pres. Corazon Aquino signed EO 232 on January 20.1987, this resulted in the structural and functional reorganization of the NCCDP into the National Council for the Welfare of Disabled Persons (NCWDP) and placed same under the supervision of the DSWD. At the same time, majority of PFRD's employees had been absorbed into the NCWDP.
In the meantime, PFRD retained its identity as a separate non-governmental foundation that can rightfully claim responsibility for helping bring about the organization and formation of the present NCDA.
On Feb. 26, 2008 the NCWDP was transferred by President Arroyo from the DSWD to the Office of the President and renamed it as the National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA).
The Philippine Foundation for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled is a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of measure to prevent disability, protect and rehabilitate the disabled and equalize opportunities for disabled persons. Its birth in 1949 virtually launched the rehabilitation movement in the Philippines and provided a forum for the coordination of rehabilitation activities nationwide. In recognition of its contribution to rehabilitation, PFRD became the first local organization to be admitted as an affiliate-member of Rehabilitation International, a federation of some 150 cause oriented organizations in 80 countries worldwide. In 1979, PFRD began the first-ever national sports competition for the disabled. Called “Philympics” the project integrated sports into the therapeutic, recreational, psychological and social approaches to rehabilitation.
In recent years however, the gains made by PFRD have been overshadowed by runaway population growth, deterioration of basic services poor quality of education, unequal wealth distribution and a host of other negative factors which have fostered fierce competition for scant and declining resources.
Thus, PFRD has redirected its policies and strategies to effectively accomplish its primary mission of promoting rehabilitation against a backdrop of unfavorable social and economic conditions. In this light PFRD sees itself in the role of a committed and concerned advocate and catalyst for self-reliance programs for the disabled. It seeks specially to generate maximum awareness on disability issues and trigger favorable response through well-publicized awards for people engaged in disability work.
PRFD is committed to pursue the following objectives:
- To promote the recognition of outstanding individuals and organizations involved in rehabilitation through the Apolinario Mabini Awards and to help enable them to effectively continue their work
- To promote the training and development of qualified individuals in rehabilitation careers.
- To support medical, social, educational and vocational rehabilitation programs and activities which help enable persons with disabilities to become self-reliant.
- To develop and strengthen linkages with government and non-government organizations
- To promote the recognition of outstanding individuals and organizations involved in rehabilitation through the Apolinario Mabini Awards and to help enable them to effectively continue their work.