Wheelchairs no longer needed are now providing joy, hope, mobility and freedom to thousands of people with disabilities around the world.
Hope Haven of Rock Valley plans to ship 15,000 free rebuilt wheelchairs this year to children and adults with disabilities living in the Dominican Republic, Vietnam, Romania, Ghana, Poland, Guatemala and other developing countries around the world.
To meet this urgent demand, the Storm Lake Middle School plans to conduct a wheelchair drive during the week of April 16-20 throughout the area. Plans for the wheelchair drive are being conducted by members of the middle school student council. All used wheelchairs can be taken to the Storm Lake Middle School which will serve as a drop off site.
Many developing countries have huge shortages of wheelchairs and most residents are too poor to buy a wheelchair; however, in the United States, hundreds of thousands of wheelchairs, crutches and walkers end up in landfills annually. These are the wheelchairs that Hope Haven seeks to rebuild and distribute to those children with disabilities around the world. The wheelchair drive in Storm Lake will provide an excellent opportunity for persons with disabilities along with such places as nursing homes, hospitals and home medical companies to donate their used wheelchairs to a very worthwhile cause.
"We need approximately 16,000 used wheelchairs to meet the distribution goal this year," said Marlowe Van Ginkel, director of church and public relations of Hope Haven. "The end result of such a drive is hopefully each wheelchair will demonstrate in a very practical way the love and compassion of friends in the Storm Lake area for the poorest of the poor by giving them dignity and improving their quality of life."
For more information concerning this project, please call the Storm Lake Middle School at 732-8080 or Van Ginkel at Hope Haven (712) 476-3117.