Jack needs reliable wheels!
We are currently driving at 17 year-old Dodge Caravan with over 100,000 miles on it. It leaks transmission fluid, and the ramp and door operate on their own whims. We entered a contest a while back to try to win a new accessible van, and with amazing public support, we were semi-finalists. Sadly, we didn't win the van, but friends have suggested that we fundraise to make this happen.
There are no Medi-Cal programs that buy accessible vans for wheelchair users. I traded in my 2004 Nissan XTerra a few years ago when Jack was ready for a power wheelchair. Even with a trade-in, I still had to pay an additional $6000 for the '95 Dodge Caravan. Accessible vehicles are amazingly expensive. A new van that would accomodate Jack's chair would cost us around $60,000. We're not asking for that much. All we need is something that will get him into adulthood.
I (his dad Lou) am a single parent whose only work is to care for Jack. While I'd love to work outside the home, Jack's current needs make it necessary for me to be available to him at all times. Jack has spastic quadraplegic cerebral palsy. He sees 11 doctors, plus receiving OT and PT services. He's had 7 surgeries so far, and is expected to have at least one more, probably in the coming year or so. In addition to needing my care for recovery, unexpected complications and illnesses require that I be able to drop any personal plans so that I can attend to his needs.
Don't get me wrong-- being Jack's dad is the most beautiful, powerful experience that I could ever hope for. It's just that our circumstances are such that large expenses such as a car payment for an adapted wheelchair van are out of my reach. This is why I'm asking for your help.
What We Need & What You Get:
We need $40,000 for a late model used wheelchair van. I'll be working with Nor-Cal Mobility in Burlingame, CA to find a van we can afford that will also last long enough to at least get Jack through high school.
What we can give you in return:
10 dollars will get you heartfelt thanks and a shout-out on Jack's and my Facebook pages.
100 dollars will get you heartfelt thanks, a shout-out on Jack's and my Facebook pages, and one of Jack's autographed baseball cards.
250 and more dollars will get you heartfelt thanks, a shout-out on Jack's and my Facebook pages, one of Jack's autographed baseball cards, and a ride in the van.
500 dollars will get you heartfelt thanks, a shout-out on Jack's and my Facebook pages, one of Jack's autographed baseball cards, a ride in the van, and an invitation to waffles at our house.
1,000 or more- we'll talk. You can help choose what sort of perk you'd like. If you live in California, maybe we could drive the new fan to visit. We love road trips!
If we don't reach our entire goal, we'll put the money in savings, and try to patch up our current van until we can get some reliable wheels.
Jack's a busy guy. He has lots of doctors' appointments, plays Challenger Baseball, and generally loves to be out in his community. I don't feel safe taking him far from home, though, because I'm never sure the van will get us there safely. We'd love to travel, to go to all the amazing California landmarks without fear of getting stuck on the road. Right now, we stay pretty close to home. Your gift will make a huge impact on Jack's life, allowing him to fully enjoy the great adventures our state has to offer.
Other Ways You Can Help
I get it. Not all of us have money to spare. Here's how you can help:
- Talk up the cause. Post the link to our site on your Facebook, Twitter, or other social media sites.
- Some great folk are going to be doing some benefits for Jack over the summer. Come out and support!
- Watch this site for updates on other ways to help out, or hit me up with your own ideas!
Thanks so much. If we pull this off, it will be a result of caring people who stretch themselves when times are challenging. You'll have our eternal gratitude. Really.