COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 70 million people need wheelchairs, but only five to 15 percent of people have access to them. The inaugural Mobility Fest was held at Woodruff park on Saturday, raising awareness and funds.
When I think about getting someone off the ground, I just say, that’s all I can do.Jeff Carter, President of the Board of Mobility Worldwide of East Alabama & West Georgia
The faith based, non-profit, Mobility Worldwide, is addressing the global need by providing a life changing gift to those with mobility impairments. They build three-wheeled, off-road wheelchairs propelled by hand. Their mission — empowering people by fulfilling a basic human need — giving the impaired a new form of transportation.
One local volunteer personally delivered carts to recipients in Kenya and says it was an unforgettable experience.
Dickson was humped over. I don’t know exactly what his malady was, but he couldn’t get around. Dickson was so happy. It was just a gift that changed his life and it’s all because of donors, volunteers and the community that made that possible.Sam Singer, Mobility Worldwide of East Alabama & West Georgia Volunteer
Local ministries across the Fountain City decorated a cart towards the cause. Jaxon Prins, 20, had the opportunity to build a mobility cart. He says the eye opening experience reminded him to never take walking for granted.
People like me, you really don’t think about walking because it’s something you can do. But they have to get around for their livelihood. And with this [mobility cart], it has room for them to put all their stuff on, for them to get around and now they don’t have to crawl through the mud. I think it’s really great.Jaxon Prins, Mobility Fest Volunteer
Some of the mobility carts distributed are made right here in the Chattahoochee Valley. One volunteer says the goal is not to feed those in developing countries a fish, but teach them how to go fishing.
We’ve started a shop in Kenya and we’re sourcing them whatever they need to get on their feet to be able to boost their own carts.Jeff Carter, President of the Board of Mobility Worldwide of East Alabama & West Georgia
All proceeds from the event will go towards the cost of shipping and distributing mobility carts to Kenya and buying materials to make them. Mobility Worldwide has distributed 100,000 mobility carts. Their affiliate in East Alabama and West Georgia build around 150 carts locally each year.