Elizabeth's DRIVE to Stand UP With Kids Learning

My story started 8 years ago when I developed a pressure ulcer due to my disability, being a full-time wheelchair user. Between generous donations and working to save money over the past 7 years, I was able to purchase a standing wheelchair which will allow me to continue doing what I love: teaching, and helping to support my family. These wheelchairs are prohibitively expensive, and my insurance denied it, which is why it took 7 years to get the money together to afford to purchase the chair. Unfortunately, by the time I purchased the chair, I was already dealing with another pressure sore, in the same area as the one  8 years ago. 

This past year has been so hard on so many people. I've been lucky to continue teaching from home, as my district has been on distance learning. I teach from my standing wheelchair from a desk in my dining room! As the year is coming to a close, I need to think about next school year, and the future.

I will be having surgery again, hopefully in early summer, to repair the pressure sore, and after my recovery, will be back to teaching. There's one final obstacle in my way: Transportation.

I drive a 14 year old sedan that is equipped with hand controls and a wheelchair lift on top of the car specifically for a folding manual wheelchair. My standing wheelchair is a power chair. It's big, it's powerful, and it is absolutely nothing short of amazing! But, it does not fold, it isn't lightweight, nor easy to store. I cannot drive my car and have access to my standing wheelchair. Because we spent $19,400 on the standing wheelchair, it depleted my wheelchair fund. We started saving money again in the same dedicated savings account and have $6,000 saved. But, a new van will be approximately $50,000-60,000. There are quite a few used wheelchair vans for sale, but they are equipped for disabled PASSENGERS. Finding a used van in good condition for a disabled DRIVER is rarer than hen's teeth! The cost of converting our 26 year old wheelchair van (passenger only) would cost more than the van is worth, and the van is beginning to have issues which will just get worse with time.

If we were to continue to save money the way we have been, it would be a good 7-8 years before we had enough saved and could afford to finance the remaining amount. My car (being 14 years old) most likely won't make it that long. I don't want to purchase another sedan, because I won't be able to go out and get to and from work in my standing wheelchair. So... I again am asking for your support. My family depends on my income for health insurance and basic necessities. We can't make it on one income alone (we've tried!). Plus, teaching is my love, my passion, and my DRIVE for everything I do. I love my students, and my students' families!

With your help, I'll be able to get a proper vehicle, fitted specifically for me as a disabled, wheelchair using driver. We can finance about $20,000, but that's a far cry from the $50,000-60,000 needed. If you are able, please consider helping me get the van I need...my life's work is not done. I have students to teach, the future to shape. My DRIVE is for my students. Please allow me the opportunity to DRIVE for the future. For their futures, and for mine.
  • Ann Excell 
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Catherine Silver 
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Norita Espinosa 
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Sonia Pereira 
    • $25 
    • 5 mos
  • georgia sidoris 
    • $40 
    • 5 mos
See all

Organizer

Elizabeth Congram Allen 
Organizer
Las Vegas, NV