Last fall, a team from Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church (MDPC) in Houston, Texas, embarked on a vision trip to Peru, where they connected with our local distribution partner, Camino de Vida Church (CDV).
As they trekked up a steep hillside one morning, a member of CDV explained that the higher you go, the greater the poverty you encounter: houses that are higher up are less desirable due to the increased difficulty in accessing power and water.
On this hill, elevation corresponds with economic hardship, and Sabrina lived at the top.
Sabrina, 65, lives in a modest home with her daughter and three grandchildren. Her severe osteoarthritis prevents her from walking. For years, Sabrina would crawl to get from place to place.
But that was about to change.
The team from MDPC and CDV had come to bring her a new GEN_2 wheelchair. They assembled and adjusted the wheelchair for a custom fit, showed her how to use and maintain the wheelchair, taught her exercises to help prevent pressure sores, and closed their time by praying with her.
Churches have always been key partners in this mission, ever since we gave away our first four wheelchairs on a mission trip to India with Mariners Church in 2001.
In those early days, a number of churches and ministry leaders rallied around this cause, and as we began to ship containers of wheelchairs to more countries, we began to partner with churches like CDV, who would receive and distribute the wheelchairs in their respective communities.
Throughout the years, churches have supported the mission by hosting events, holding fundraisers, spreading the word about the need for mobility, and most importantly, by praying for us.
As an expression of gratitude to our ministry partners, our team has created resources including a 40-day devotional for Easter and the FWM Cause Kit, which can be used on its own or as part of a VBS curriculum. Both of these free resources are downloadable here.
If your church would like to get more involved with Free Wheelchair Mission, please contact our church relations officer, Ivy Leeson, for more information or to request a Be a Blessing fundraising kit. Churches that raise funds for a full container of wheelchairs are invited to send teams on vision trips, such as the one taken by MDPC to Peru last fall.
As we enter the 40-day journey leading up to Easter, we invite you to join us in prayer for our wheelchair recipients and their families, for our distribution partners, who make a lasting impact in their communities, for our volunteers and staff, and for each and every one of you, whose continued partnership has made this mission possible.
Thank you for being part of this journey with us.