Grants give mobility to special needs kids
As a recipient of grants from the city of Yuma and the United Way of Yuma County, the Adapted Equipment Sharing Center has been able to purchase mobility equipment and place it in the homes of special needs students.
Ninety-three children in our community have currently been identified as having various mobility needs at home. We did not fully understand the "ripple" effect that helping a child walk or ride an adapted bike could have on the entire community until we placed equipment in their homes.
Thanks to the generosity of the city of Yuma and the United Way, some of our community's handicapped children now have more independence, and are able to participate more fully in the community. As the children
become more mobile, the parents are given the freedom to shop our community stores, go to restaurants, movies, church, etc., and to participate in activities in the community with their children.
The children are exposed to a variety of activities and developmental skills and opportunities that are not available to children confined to a wheelchair. The impaired child and their family can enjoy participation with the extended family members, and they become more comfortable and understanding of the needs of our now non-mobile or semi-mobile children.
The equipment needed to help the children walk and bike is very expensive. The adapted tricycles needed for handicapped children and teens cost almost $1,000 each. Likewise, a gait-trainer (equipment to support children while they learn to walk) is approximately $1,000. The bike can be the transportation for a person to be independent for life and the gait-trainer can allow children to learn to walk, when no hope was previously given.
Imagine a bike being your only transportation, and you were not provided the opportunity to learn to ride a bike due to financial restrictions, or know that you have the capability of walking, but cannot afford the equipment necessary to support you while you learn. This is a sad scenario, but very true for many special needs children in our community.
We would like to offer a huge thank you to the city of Yuma, the United Way and their employees for their generous donations. The children, now more mobile, and their families thank you too!
STAFF AND BOARD MEMBERS