Franny Fund 2017

Frances Ruth Welch-Cabler was born a healthy baby girl on July 15th 2000.

At 10 days old she was hospitalized and treated for viral encephalitis and seizures.

At 5 months old she started Physical and Occupational therapy due to her lack of physical capabilities.  At 1 year she was diagnosed with Hemiplegic Cerebral palsy (later re-diagnosed as Tripeligia or “high functioning Quadriplegia”.)  Not long after that her specific type of Epilepsy was identified as Status Epilepticus.

         I would like to briefly explain what Cerebral Palsy and Epilepsy is and how it affects Franny.  Cerebral Palsy is a non-degenerative, incurable central nervous system disorder.  It affects some or all body movement, muscle control, muscle coordination, muscle tone, reflex, posture and balance.  
Franny’s type of CP affects all of those things.  She is unable to stand, walk or switch positions without considerable assistance.  She needs help with all of her daily routine; bathing, going to the bathroom, brushing teeth, brushing hair,  getting dressed, putting shoes on, and anything that has to do with self-care.  Franny can manage her food very well if prepared correctly as she can only use one arm and hand.

Epilepsy, (also called a seizure disorder) is a disorder in which nerve cell activity in the brain is disturbed, causing seizures. Treatment can help, but the condition can’t be cured. Franny’s type of epilepsy is very rare, Status Epilepticus is characterised as a seizure lasting  5 mins or longer without returning to a normal level of consciousness.  This is a medical emergency that may lead to permanent brain damage or death.  

Franny’s seizures were incredibly devastating lasting up to two hours and happening every two weeks, for many years.  We are extremely happy to report that with some dramatic lifestyle changes,  such as longer uninterrupted sleep cycles and consistent exercise, she hasn’t suffered seizures such as those for years.  She still has seizures, less often and with much less severity,  but the diagnosis is current and present in her day to day life.

What are we fundraising for:

3 hours per week of a sustainable, fun, high quality, varied, therapeutic fitness/wellness program.

         It is an uphill battle for a physically disabled person to to stay healthy and strong.

As an example, going for a walk: most people can get up off the couch, slip some shoes on,  walk out the door and enjoy a walk, for free.  

In order for Franny to “take a walk” she must first (after getting a referral from her primary care doctor and Physical therapist) make an appointment to a specific clinic, be driven across town, where a PT and an assistant will get her into a suit that will stand her up and help her walk on a treadmill for 50 mins. The whole process is expensive, long, and tedious,  but absolutely necessary for Franny’s health.

What each hour will entail and how much will it cost:

Robotic Lokomat therapy:  (treadmill walking I was describing)

A robotic gait orthosis bodyweight support system that assists walking to gait-impaired people.

60 min per week

Cost: 275.00 per hour

Physical therapy:

To increase Franny’s strength flexibility, motor development and mobility.

60 min per week

Cost: 200 per visit

Personal trainer:

Helping Franny exercise in spite of her disabilities. Improving strength, balance, body composition and general physical ability.

60 min per week

Cost: 60.00 per visit + 30.00 per month gym membership.

Also, recently Franny’s manual wheelchair was stolen.  Medicaid only pays for either (1) manual chair or (1) electric chair.  Franny, and most people, need both.  The quote to replace is her manual chair is $3000

The total for one year:

3 hours per week = $26,040

Insurance pays for 30 PT/ Lokomat visits per year = $6,000

New manual wheelchair = $3000

Total private pay = $23,040 per year

What our fundraising goal is = $23,000

The most important part of this whole thing-  why give to one kid?

Good question.  

I did some asking around, and time and time again I got this response.

Because it can directly and positively alter the direction of one person’s life. It’s a wonderful thing to be able to participate in the well being of another. Franny will still have to do all the hard work,  and I have watched her over the last 17 years as she always tries her hardest.  The kid’s got big big dreams for herself!   Her father has put together a video that will be a better description of Franny,  the real life version is pretty awesome.

We would like to have these 3 hours in place for her, so to some degree we can have “normal” parent expenses, have our other daughter Hazel not suffer from the financial burden and have Franny have “fun normal stuff” too.  

Thank you so much, 

Cole and Leah Cabler

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  • Debra Salas-Haynes 
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  • Naomi Dagen Bloom 
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  • Alys Fowler 
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See all


Cole Cabler 
Portland, OR
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