Help Umar Get a Wheelchair Van!

$6,985 of $35,000 goal

Raised by 90 people in 44 months
Waiting is hard for many people. It’s difficult for them to wait in line at the drive-through, the grocery store, or at the bank. Waiting is obnoxious because people are accustomed to getting things quickly for themselves without having to rely on anyone else. Thus, when something we really want is out of reach and requires an extended wait-time, it’s frustrating.

What if waiting became a constant cloud over our heads? What if we had to wait for EVERYTHING? What if we had to wait for something as simple as moving from the living-room to the kitchen for a snack? Would we be able to stand our hunger because we had to wait for someone else to help us? 

Our little brother, Umar, has to wait for EVERYTHING! As a non-verbal and immobile (wheelchair-bound) 14-year old boy, Umar has limited independence. He has to rely on his family (mom and us older sisters) to help him with his daily living skills, such as bathing, dressing, and feeding. Despite his lack of mobility and inability to speak, Umar is a very delightful boy! He is the love of our lives, the center of our universe. He has an infectious smile, a love for Disney movies, and an affinity for technology. Umar uses a Dynavox communication device (similar to what Stephen Hawkings has) to speak. Umar needs our help to transport him from point A to point B. He needs assistance to be carried from room to room, and also, to his manual wheelchair, which someone then has to push. This means that something as little as wanting to retrieve his IPAD from a distance across the room, or join a group for a game, is impossible for him to do on his own. He has to wait to get someone’s attention. Once he has their attention, Umar then has to wait for the person to understand his needs, either through gestures or through his electronic communication device. Umar is extremely social, intelligent, and sensitive. He notices what others are doing and wants to be able to join them, but is unable to. Umar waits ALL the time. Typically, he waits with patience and grace. He waits with a smile and sweetness. Sometimes, he waits with tears swelling in his big brown eyes and a heart-wrenching pout. He waits….and he waits.

But he shouldn’t have to. 

As you can see from the picture provided (with his Bat mobile), Umar has pretty much outgrown his current manual wheelchair. Insurance only covers the costs for a wheelchair every 5 years; hence, getting a new one is a pretty big deal! We want to make sure that the next wheelchair he gets is a perfect fit for him since he will have to keep it for at least five years.

In order for Umar to attain his independence and reduce the ever-present-waiting from his life, he needs a power wheelchair. Umar did a power wheelchair trial at the rehab center and also at his school. At first, just like any young boy, he acted a little silly and crashed into a wall every now and then (you can view the video under "Updates"). But then he worked very hard and within a short amount of time, Umar was successful in demonstrating competency, making good choices, and maintaining safety while operating the power wheelchair (this video is also under "Updates"). This is perfect right? Here’s the dilemma, a wheelchair-accessible van MUST be available prior to the transition from manual wheelchair to power wheelchair. Why? Because a power wheelchair weighs around 200 lbs and can't be disassembled to fit into our sole family car (a four-door sedan).

We've been doing excessive heavy lifting to make transportation possible for Umar, constantly assembling and disassembling his wheelchair and hoisting it into the trunk of the car.

 There is no way Umar will be able to get a power wheelchair and travel with us without an accessible van. Not having a wheelchair-accessible van is the only obstacle between Umar and his power wheelchair. He’s worked so hard and made tremendous feats in learning how to use the power wheelchair, and we’re so very proud of him. He is now ready to cruise according to his own will. The amount of happiness and joy that this will give him and our family is priceless. But as you know, there are prices to these things. Please help us meet the cost for a wheelchair-accessible van so that Umar doesn’t have to wait any longer.

Help Umar start the New Year with independence. He’s waited long enough. We need your help to give him the freedom and mobility that he deserves!

~Umar's Sisters

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Oh, my! How time flies! Its been ages since I've posted anything new, but Umar had quite an awesome weekend and I'd love to share!

Umar got to attend his first ever Special Olympics Spring Games for Track & Field at North Central College this past Sunday. He had a blast! He was in his power-wheelchair to compete in a race and a throwing competition. He earned two medals for his efforts and made his family, coaches and friends so proud!

On a different note, Umar got super lucky. Since the sporting event wasn't within walking distance, his school arranged an accessible bus for just Umar to use. That was very generous of them! However, it was an accommodation that can't be expected every time. Hence, I'l still hoping that we'll have the funds raised to get Umar his very own accessible van. It would be so nice to have Umar be independent in his power wheelchair wherever we go.

Thanks, as always, for reading, sharing, and contributing. <3

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Salaam & Ramadan Mubarak,

Umar's been enjoying his summer break and Ramadan thus far. He used his power chair at school (since they have an accessible bus), but now that he's on break, he can only use it to ride in the neighborhood. It would be great if he could use his power chair in the mosque for Eid prayer, at restaurants for family outings, and on family trips. Unfortunately, no van means that he's limited to using his chair only at school and only for short walks in the neighborhood. We are so proud of Umar for working hard and learning how to use the power chair; thus, it's disheartening that he cannot be independent and use his power chair regularly.

As this month of giving comes to an end, please donate generously and continue donating after Ramadan and spreading the good word until we reach our goal.

The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "The believer's shade on the Day of Resurrection will be his charity." - Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith 604

Peace and Blessings,
The Umar Clan
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Hello world!

Today is the start of an exciting next few days. In celebration of Umar's 15th birthday on June 4th, family and friends are getting together in the evenings from 6/2- 6/5 to help Umar have an awesome week. Over the course of the next few days, Umar will be going to the movies, bowling, the Rainforest Cafe, Dave and Busters, and the park for a picnic! Help Umar's birthday be even more awesome with the news that we are getting closer to reaching our goal of buying Umar an accessible van! Share this page, tweet it, or make a contribution. Any and every effort is greatly appreciated!

Lots of love,
The Umar clan
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Guess who's birthday is in less than 2 weeks?!? You guessed right- Mr. Umar will be 15 on June 4th! Wouldn't it be awesome if we were able to present an accessible van to him (gifted by generous friends and strangers alike) on his birthday? Just food for thought... :D
Have a great Memorial Day weekend, everyone! Stay safe and enjoy your BBQs.

As always, every contribution is greatly appreciated. Please share this page on facebook and twitter!
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Read a Previous Update
Veronica Fouche
39 months ago

Praying for Umar to get his Van . I am glad to see he is so Happy with his Wheel chair

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Veronica Fouche
43 months ago

I am glad for all the support and I know Umar will get his wheelchair access van

+ Read More

$6,985 of $35,000 goal

Raised by 90 people in 44 months
Created December 13, 2014
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39 months ago
Veronica Fouche
39 months ago

Praying for Umar to get his Van . I am glad to see he is so Happy with his Wheel chair

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Veronica Fouche
43 months ago

I am glad for all the support and I know Umar will get his wheelchair access van

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