Since I received this wheelchair, I can actually dance!
Daria is 7 years old and she can hypnotize you with her big curious eyes with long eyelashes. She easily makes friends everywhere and greets them with a warm and sincere hug each time they meet. It was the same with the Motivation team.
We donated an appropriate wheelchair for Daria, through the Wheelchair Fund, the same month she turned 7, in September. Before this, she was using a stroller. Her parents used to help her get into all the places she wanted to go and helped her with anything. The disability that the little girl has had since birth prevents her from walking, but she remains a curious, cheerful child, eager to explore and overcome limits. So, following their discussion with the family and the wheelchair assessment, our colleagues recommended a lightweight, active, manual wheelchair.
Daria received the wheelchair at the Caravan for mobility and health dedicated to wheelchair users, organized by the Motivation team in Ilfov County. Handling her wheelchair independently was as easy as a game to her. Wide-eyed and curious, she paid great attention to the independent living trainers and was able to practice their movements with ease.
For Daria, the wheelchair she received was the start of a new stage in her life, one with more freedom and more discoveries. Before this, Daria used to go to ballet with her sister, but her mother was helping her to move from one place to another. The stroller she had did not allow her to do this on her own. Now, the little girl has enrolled in the dance course in kindergarten and she is happy to participate in the classes, along with her classmates.
Her colleagues were curious to know how the wheelchair works, as they found the mobility equipment quite interesting and fun. So, Daria’s mother let them try it, under her supervision. And this is how disability can become a topic of discussion, an opportunity to learn and celebrate diversity.
Ten days after receiving the wheelchair, Daria participated in the children’s race at the Bucharest Marathon. She finished it with a big smile and a shiny medal – one of the first wins in a long line, as we predict.
*Below are some photos of Daria exploring in her wheelchair and successfully crossing the marathon finish line.
Photo: Bogdan Dincă