This photo taken on July 14, 2017 shows Disaster Hack founder Matthew Rockwell (R) attaching a 3D printed prosthetic hand to leprosy sufferer Ram's arm in Kathmandu. (AFP Photo)
Kathmandu: Ram's new hand was manufactured on a 3D printer in Nepal's capital for just $30, an innovation that could be a game changer for many in the impoverished Himalayan country.
Once a farmer, Ram lost his hands and toes within a few years of contracting leprosy, forcing the father-of-three to turn to begging in a desperate bid to feed his family.
That's where he was spotted by US-born Matthew Rockwell, the founder of Disaster Hack, a non-profit technology startup that is making functional prosthetic hands for those who couldn't otherwise afford them.
Disaster Hack makes its money doing tech consulting and teaching people to code, while running altruistic ventures on the side like teaching Nepalis IT skills and manufacturing low-cost, basic prosthetics.
Rockwell - who flits between Nepal and the US, where he is part of the tech team behind the annual Burning Man festival in Nevada's Black Rock Desert - brought a 3D printer to Kathmandu after a powerful earthquake struck the country in 2015.