Wheelchair Enterprise Taking Off!

Sonoran UCEDD
DDNN Summer 2011

man in all terrain wheelchairAs you may recall, the First Border Conference on Disability was held in Nogales, Sonora in October of 2008. A goal of that Conference was not just to learn from the day and network a bit with others of like mind but most importantly, to leave something behind. That something would be a shop that would construct durable all-terrain customized wheel chairs. It was to be a “social business”, a not-for-profit enterprise. The chairs would be sold at cost with subsides for those unable to pay the full price. In May of this year, the shop was opened and the first chairs have been made. They are beautiful of solid construction, perfect welding, soft seating, large flexible rubber front wheels to negotiate the rough uneven sidewalks and dirt roads without tipping or getting stuck, and either blue or red paint that has been fired into the frame so chipping is not a problem. Rotary International has been instrumental in making this a sustainable business. The Centro de Capacitacion Industrial #118CE is donating space and utilities.  Desarrollo Integral de la Familia (DIF) is helping with identifying individuals in need and with ensuring that the chairs are costumed made to fit the person.  Four chairs have been made and sold thus far – the dream has been realized!

2011 Border Conference on Disability Article