The primary objective of The Red Thread's mobility program is to help physically challenged individuals become as independent and mobile as possible. Through this project we hope to achieve another important goal: to eliminate the social stigma associated with disabled people, proving that those with handicaps are not to be pitied or viewed as second-class citizens.

 
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By offering valuable and practical assistance, we help them reach their full potential and are achieving this goal by:

  • Providing All Terrain Wheelchairs (ATWs) to people with handicaps living in remote regions and developing countries
  • Training people to assemble, maintain and fix ATWs in their home country
  • Supplying prosthetics, orthotics, canes and walkers to those without access to these critical tools for independence
  • Supporting prosthetic and orthotic shops that serve destitute children
  • Awarding scholarships for continuous hippotherapy treatment and therapeutic riding to enable children to walk independently

These mobility tools and programs literally change the lives of those we serve. In the USA, hippotherapy and therapeutic riding help children learn to move. In developing countries, children are able to go school and adults can better interact with their families, return to work and become productive members of society. In every case, the recipient beams with pride at their newly found independence, causing their self-worth to soar and their self-confidence to increase.

ATWs
Even before Haiti's severe 2010 earthquake, people with disabilities lived marginalized lives due to lack of mobility and extreme social stigma. Poor roads, unpaved areas, rough terrain and steep mountains were—and continue to be—constant obstacles to those with handicaps. Couple that with the fact that the majority of wheelchairs in Haiti are hospital-style (meant for smooth surfaces and controlled conditions that don't exist in Haiti), it's easy to understand the need.

The Red Thread Promise has provided 100+ ATWs for people with disabilities in Haiti. These rugged ATWs feature a heavy-duty frame, mountain bike tires, specialized seat cushions and more, making this chair the perfect fit for Haiti's extreme terrain. These wheelchairs significantly improve the standard of living and quality of life for both children and adults. Recipients receive more than the gift of a simple chair: they gain the ability for improved self-care, become more productive, and reduce the burden on their already struggling families.

We are currently working to set up a centrally located repair and maintenance station in Port-au-Prince to extend the use of the chairs for years beyond their hospital-style counterparts. The repair and maintenance center provides jobs, helps fuel the country's struggling economy and reduces the amount of waste from broken and unusable wheelchairs tossed in roadside trash heaps. We expect to expand this program by taking it to the Dominican Republic and other countries.

Please join us in giving the life-changing gift of mobility. Donate now or find out how you can help.

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