Initiative gives wheelchair users a Brush with Kindness

2013-05-15T20:00:00Z 2013-05-15T23:09:06Z Initiative gives wheelchair users a Brush with KindnessAnna Ortiz anna.ortiz@nwi.com nwitimes.com
May 15, 2013 8:00 pm  • 

For one Gary senior citizen named Maddie, getting outside on ground level by herself was almost impossible.

One Merrillville resident's neighbors often had to upright him after he had fallen out of his wheelchair because of his unstable porch ramp.

These are some of the stories Dan Klein, Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Indiana's executive director, told about his experiences with projects by Catholic Charities and Brush with Kindness.

Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Indiana, Catholic Charities and Prompt Ambulance are partnering to put the Habitat house maintenance program Brush with Kindness into motion for wheelchair users in Lake County.

On Wednesday, business, church and nonprofit organization members gathered at Habitat for Humanity on 6114 W. Ridge Road in Gary to collaborate on the project.

Last year Prompt Ambulance approached Habitat with the need for stable ramps for wheelchair users in need, Klein said.

The first ramp project was in December, and the intent is to keep building through November.

Klein said a major challenge is finding skilled laborers for the projects. While the work can be challenging, Klein said it's worth it.

"To see Maddie's eyes after we got the ramp done was enough," Klein said. "Words couldn't describe the gratitude in her eyes."

Those in need of service or who would like to volunteer can visit www.nwihabitat.org or call (219) 923-7265.

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