While some children are hoping for the latest video game or Barbie underneath their tree, others are wishing for something quite different.
“They aren’t asking for electronics or toys, but things like a new car seat, a wheelchair lift for a family vehicle, and other items they need for stability, safe mobility, and a chance to better their quality of life,” said Carolyn Polakowski, executive director for the Fragile Kids Foundation.
The foundation, which provides rehabilitative and medical equipment not covered by insurance or government programs for medically fragile children from birth to age 21, is seeking donations to fill Christmas wishes. Wishes like that of the Norris family, in need of a special feeding chair for their 4-year-old son Colby.
Colby’s mother, Rebecca Norris, said the special chair, which runs $400 to $900, would help Colby, who has PDDNOS, a type of autism, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, and a neurological disorder called Periventricular leukomalacia, sit comfortably and safely.
“It’s something he can sit in while we eat or if we want to do an activity like coloring,” she said.
“Organizations such as Fragile Kids are vital to families like ours,” said Shane Norris, Colby’s father. “Most people have no idea of the extraordinary costs that speech, physical, and occupational therapies represent, and this doesn’t even consider the special equipment many of these kids need just to support basic functions like eating, sleeping, and bathing.”
Colby’s isn’t the only Gwinnett family with a special wish this Christmas. Jordan Masterson’s family is also hoping for a special piece of equipment.
“I guess the most important thing for us is to get a lift for the van so he can get in and out of the van,” said Paul Masterson of Duluth.
Jordan, 5, who has a chromosome disorder and cerebral palsy, is in a wheelchair and can’t breathe or eat on his own.
If you would like to help children like Colby and Jordan, visit http://s334603355.onlinehome.us/ and click “Support A Child” to make a donation.