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Health 21 November 2014 15 1166
‘Miss Independence’ is an annual beauty contest for young women in wheelchairs. Its participants all have different stories that have confined them to this way of life, but all have one thing in common: a determination to live their lives to the fullest, by exploring their talents and realising their potential. They dance, go rock climbing – and even fall in love. And they’re competing amongst each other to be crowned Miss Independence. Watch the film in Russian.
China was the first country to recognise internet addiction as a clinical disorder. It has hundreds of rehab camps where concerned parents can send their web-dependent kids, who don’t always go willingly. The path to recovery isn’t easy but it is most effective, if the parents walk it with them.
E-waste, the term given to discarded electronic appliances, is often shipped by developed nations to poorer countries such as Ghana. RTD visits the country's most infamous dumping ground, Agbogbloshie. Locals call it “Sodom and Gomorrah” after the Biblical sin cities. Its air and soil are polluted with toxic chemicals, while extreme poverty, child labour and criminal gangs are also rife.
Swinging new-borns by their feet and forcing toddlers to dive – Russian PE teacher, Elena Fokina, has adopted an unconventional approach to child development at her school in Dahab, Egypt. Her critics say these methods border on abuse. But Elena insists that kids raised this way become strong, agile and independent.
This is a game in which the stake is human life. These people play with death. While the grim reaper stands at the head of the dying person’s bed, waiting for their final breath, volunteers from the Dutch “Ambulance Wish Foundation” arrive. They are prepared to fulfil any last wish of the patient. Completely free of charge!
Is there such a thing as immunity to cancer or diabetes? Dr Jaime Guevara of Ecuador believes so. He discovered that people suffering from Laron Syndrome, a form of dwarfism, never appear to develop these life-threatening diseases. But could his amazing findings benefit everyone else?
As of 11 December, the Ebola virus has claimed 7,690 lives this year. From a couple of cases at the end of March, the outbreak's rapid spread has sowed seeds of panic all around the world. RTD goes to Liberia, the country hardest hit by the disease, to speak to those battling on the frontline against the terrifying illness.
Aleksandr Suvorov graduated with a PhD from Moscow State University's department of psychology, and later went on to become a professor and work with children who are deaf and blind. While these are impressive achievements, what makes them truly remarkable is that Dr. Suvorov is both deaf and blind himself, and must communicate primarily by touch.
Autism is a fast-spreading illness. No scientist is certain where it comes from or how to cure it. One thing is clear: people with autism are intelligent individuals who don’t have the mental capability to stand their ground. As such, their well-being depends a great deal on the people around them.