Meet Lucas and help kids like him get what they need

Local News

An important resource in the Erie Community is asking for help.  The Shriner’s Hospital for Children Telethon is going on right now and runs until eight tonight.

This is the fourth year that WJET has teamed up with Shriner’s to host this event.  Your pledge will help Shriner’s Wheelchair Seating Clinic provide the right chair for every unique child.   Three-year-old Lucas is getting the hang of using his new power chair.

Lucas is being properly fitted for his new chair.  It’s a very comprehensive process using the latest tools in assessing the child’s needs.

Physical Therapist Janet Noland tells us, “when we are providing seating, we want to provide everything that they need but not too much, not bound down or tied… We want them to be able to move and the job of a child is to play so we want them to be able to play”.

Lindsey Davis says, “he often gets upset being in the [old] power chair because he is strapped down, so him being comfortable is very important to me”.

Depending on its complexity, a chair can cost $25,000 or more.  If a patient’s insurance does not cover it, Shriner’s relies on its Restricted Donations Fund to give the child what they need, no matter the cost.

Lucas is slowly learning the joystick and the feeling of independence because he is in control of his own movement.  Noland tells us more about how important this independence can be.  “As soon as these children start to experience some sort of self-driven mobility where they are controlling where they are going they start to develop so much psychosocially, all of [the] sudden words just start to come and suddenly, things that it seems like they have been bottling up they are able to put words to.”

Davis tells us how having this new chair has improved Lucas’ mood.  “He’s just a happy go lucky kid.  Smiles all the time, he’s just the life of the party.”

Until 8pm, you can call 814-875-8888 to make a pledge.  You can also visit the hospital on West 8th Street to donate in person.  After 8pm, you can donate online.  Thanks for caring!

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