“To raise the poor, with disabilities, from the dust and give them a place of physical dignity”—Wheels of Hope
HOW WHEELS OF HOPE TRANSFORMED OUR WORLD
While conducting the original Everyman door-to-door Handicapped, Disability and Poverty Census and Vaccination programs in 2002, Omar was shocked to find both children and adults alike who were afflicted with severe physical and/or mental handicaps. Because of their extreme poverty, that had no means of being moved. They were lying on the floor, or on couches, or beds all day because they had no other means of being moved. To be moved, some were being physically carried, or dragged around. Others were wheeled around in makeshift carts.
As a result, Omar revisited all of the families the census identified were living in this condition. He took a volunteer doctor with him who created the specification for the appropriate wheelchair for each child’s size and disability.
We then went about about trying to find someone who could help us get the chairs for these children.
Research uncovered the extraordinary USA based foundation “Wheels of Hope,” a Christian organization that collects, reconditions, and gives wheelchairs, walking aids and related durable medical equipment to those in great need in developing or recovering nations. As a Christian organization, Wheels of Hope aims to meet the needs of the human spirit as well as the physical needs of those who receive equipment. These needs include acceptance, purpose and dignity.
Their stated mission is:
To raise the poor (with disabilities) from the dust and give them a place of physical dignity, spiritual regeneration in Christ and capability in Christ.
Everyman contacted Wheels of Hope, explained our needs and immediately formed a warm and loving relationship with them. Through their wonderful organization we procured the original 15 customized wheelchairs which were shipped to Colon for distribution by Omar and his team.
The result revolutionized the lives of 15 children and their families in 2002 and has, ever since, formed the basis of the ongoing Everyman “Doing What We Can” Program.
Every wheelchair is custom fitted for the recipient. Everyman completes a Wheels of Hope specification form and submits it to Wheels of Hope. Individual donors donate or pay for each chair. The chairs are refurbished and packed into containers at Wheels of Hope.