Hi! ... I'm Cooper. I'm 14 years old and 34 inches tall (yep, you read that right ... 34 INCHES).
I'm a Little Person ... a person with Dwarfism ... I'm of short stature ... I'm Mini Cooper.
My sister and I are both in the 8th grade in Littleton, Colorado (she's the giant :) ... and we are raising money to go on our class trip to Washington D.C. AND New York.
Not only are we needing to raise enough funds for the two of us ... but my mom also needs to go, she does my daily nursing care. I also have some obvious travel challenges being mini: carrying my luggage, reaching the sink and shower at the hotel (and the potties everywhere else), needing to use elevators and navigating streets and curbs.
To top it off, I can't even take my electric wheelchair because the tour bus isn't ADA, so Mom will need to push me in my manual chair. Mr. Weber says we'll walk over 11 miles each day. Well, some of us will ... ;)
It's not right to expect anyone else to care for me. I really need my Mom to go.
Below is our trip flyer. Look on the right side! It's jam-packed with so many tours and sites. It's going to be AH-MAZ-ING! Christiana and I are super excited to have our minds exploded by our Nation's history. It's one thing to read about it at school; it's another to experience it. We want the experience. :)
But, we're running out of time. Mom says we need to be fully funded by the registration date so we can be certain that we can pay for it. Our school extended the deadline to December 1st. We're SO close!
The trip is ALL INCLUSIVE ... they even provide us a tour guide and private night-time hotel security.
The cost is $2,095 + $219 (travel insurance with medical) PER person ... for a total of $6,942.
I know!!!! That's an insanely-crazy amount of money. Mom said if Christiana and I REALLY want to go, then we would have to fund-raise ... so we started "selling" my book at church (more on my book, later). Actually ... we weren't "selling" my book, but giving it away FREE with donation. We came home after service that first Sunday with over $600 in donations!! That's when we knew we actually had A REAL SHOT at making our goal. Our church family is so AMAZING! We are so thankful.
We know the chance to go to D.C. is worth all our efforts. Aside from being a fun trip, this is truly a once-in-a-life-time opportunity. With all the sites listed and a tour guide ... we could never take this kind of fast-paced trip as a family; we're a family of TEN.
Aside from the cost being OUTRAGEOUS, it would be as enjoyable as brushing my teeth with a mouth full of Oreo's. Big families are full of fun and laughter, but let's be honest ... they're a TON of hard work.
Mom and Dad have been foster parents for more than 13 years. They've cared for over 32 kids (we've helped). Most of them went back home or to relatives ... but a few didn't. I am part of the few (... the proud ... the adopted). Mom and Dad have gotten to adopt 4, including me and hopefully 2 more (my little foster brother (3) and foster sister (6.5)). Each of us has our own story and our own struggles. Some of our needs are obvious (like mine), but most are invisible to others.
OK, this is a more serious picture ... my Dad (Travis), my Mom (Christina), Christiana (13), Me (13), Xavier (10), Annaliese (10), Lincoln (7.5) and Montgomery (5.5). (Our foster siblings can't be shown.)
I love the picture below ... these are friends I met at the PASCO picnic. PASCO is the company that manages my nursing care. I make friends easily ... but a lot of people have questions about me.
I'm sure you do too. Some people point, stare and whisper ... and that hurts my heart.
I decided that my life doesn't have to be full of stuff like that. So, we came up with a solution ...
Mom and I created a book, about me, to introduce myself to new people (this is the one I started "selling" (giving away with donation) at church).
Want to read it? ... You know you want to! :) I can email you a copy, for FREE.
AFTER YOU DONATE, just go to www.CooperBollacker.com
and tell me where to email it.
"LIFE IS SHORT" ... that's the title of my book. It's a personal narrative that Mom wrote for me. I mainly use it at school to introduce myself to other kids and teachers. It answers most all the questions people ask. It tells others about my history, my uniquenesses ... and my strengths. And when I'm struggling, it reminds me where I've been and encourages me to keep working towards my goals.
What took so much time and awkwardness before ... with my book, is now so easy.
My book shares my story, so I don't have to explain it a million times.
My book answers all their top questions, so people are accurately informed.
My book tells people how to interact with me, so I feel comfortable and welcomed.
My book explains my history, so others feel a connection.
My book shows my struggles, so people see my strengths ...
I can't change the world, but I can change my world!
So ... can you help me out? Will you be my Gnomie?
Can you help us get 100% FUNDED by December 1st!!!
If All Your Donation Did Was ...
1) SEND us to D.C. ... for a once-in-a-lifetime trip ... would it be worth it?
2) SHARE my story ... and it encouraged just one person ... would it be worth it?
YES!!?? Then don't be shy ... and really, NO amount is too small. (The lady up the street gave us $6. :)
Follow These THREE Steps:
STEP 1: CLICK "DONATE NOW" at the top of this page and donate any amount.
STEP 2: Go to www.CooperBollacker.com
and CLICK "YES! SEND ME THE BOOK".
STEP 3: CHECK your email account, OPEN my email, CLICK THE LINK. No download needed.
**To show our MASSIVE appreciation to our GoFundMe donors, we're giving you a PRICELESS BONUS ... **
We will be emailing regular video updates to all our GoFundMe donors as we continue to fund-raise, prepare for our trip and even while we are traveling. It'll be like you're right there with us for this entire adventure!!! :)
Thanks so much for supporting us and sharing my story!
Cooper and Christiana
P.S. Please click the "SHARE" button to help spread the word.
P.P.S. If there are extra donations, I'd like to purchase a small digital camera so I can make a memory book.
P.P.P.S. My mom wrote this page ... so if you find spelling and/or grammar errors ... those are all hers. ;)