Accessible Ride For Doug Part 2

Okay - Maybe not THIS car...

Short Version:

Last year, we started a fundraiser to help raise the $25,000 required to modify a vehicle for Doug to take his powerchair in.  Link Here  We raised nearly $10,000 towards this goal. This year, we want to finish the job.

Long Version:

Doug is a 16 year old teenager with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. As the disease progresses, he is slowly losing his independence. He is still able to walk, but the distances become shorter, and it is taking him longer and longer.  

Last summer, Doug broke his leg while camping. This made him 100% dependent on his power chair while the leg healed. Fortunately, we were able to find a used wheelchair van that we could quickly purchase thanks to the fundraising from last year.

We cannot thank you enough. The funds raised last year were almost exactly enough to cover the purchase of the van. Without it, I'm not sure what we would have done. Here's a picture of the van. (look closely at the picture for cool things our family does with wheelchair vans...)


Yes, it's a 15 year old Dodge Caravan, with a manual ramp. The Check Engine light stays on full time, and the Air Conditioning does not stay on at all. It gets us, and Doug's chair from A to B. Usually.

It is not able to be converted for Doug to drive - so we are still facing last year's fundraising hurdles. 

Our plan is to find a proper solution, and sell the current van to reinvest the value.


We need to find a Ride For Doug.

This means buying a vehicle that can fit Doug’s powerchair. It also means buying a vehicle that Doug can transfer from the chair to a seat to drive – or drive from his chair. Furthermore, the selected vehicle has to be modified with whatever special controls Doug needs to be functionally able drive it. And it needs to be cool. Someway, somehow, we need to avoid stomping on the hopes and dreams of a car guy.

And quite honestly we don’t know what that vehicle looks like. Doug has his "L" permit now. He has been partially assessed. Before we can finish the assessment, we need to provide a modified vehicle for the testing process.

Here are some facts and figures.

-       Typical minivan with powered ramp - $60,000

-       10 year old used minivan with powered ramp - $30,000

-       Ford Explorer MKV (wheelchair accessible Explorer) - $80,000

-       Typically a wheelchair conversion adds $20,000 to $30,000 to the base vehicle cost

The assessment team estimates that it will take approximately $16,000 to modify a vehicle for Doug to drive - assuming that vehicle is already wheelchair accessible to the front seat. (These are the ones that start at $60,000 to $80,000 - the $16,000 driving modifications are on top of that)

Please help us finish raising $25,000 towards getting a Ride For Doug. This will allow us to move quickly towards buying a vehicle once Doug’s driving needs are assessed. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy boys lose so much of what is important to them. Let’s do this one thing for Doug.

Thank you in advance for your kind generosity.


(You can either donate here, or save the 3% in processing fees by bringing your donations directly to the ride. Please note that these donations are not tax deductible. If you are looking for a tax deductible donation, please go to and select the Donate to MDC option.)

He has a power chair, and with the money raised last year, we were able to purchase a 15 year old, used, rear entry, wheelchair van. And it was a lifesaver. No, the air conditioning doesn't work, and the Check Engine light stays on. But it carries him.
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Cam Penner 
Langley City, BC
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