Let me introduce you to Lelia. She lives in Heppner, Oregon. Lelia is 59 years old, deaf and a quadriplegic. Born hearing, at age 3, her parents beat her until she lost her hearing.
Going through 38 foster homes, where being a tomboy, at age 14, she climbed a tree and fell, causing her quadriplegic state. Just 3 years ago, she lost her husband of 27 years after a rough battle of bad health. She has no family support. She teaches sign language for no charge in our community. She has a big heart, is known by many for her big smiles and that streak as she passes in her power wheelchair...it broke down on Thanksgiving day. She lives on her own but needs desperate help in making her home (a rental) more handicap friendly. (We have gotten permission from the landlord to do work) I've included some pictures of the condition of the house. First and foremost, we need to replace her ramp. The high school tech dept is going to do the building but we need $713 for the lumber. We additionally would like to add better locks on her doors, outdoor lighting, a new fence extension with a good gate, paving from her ramp to the street, heavy-duty commercial flooring from door to door inside that will be easier for her wheelchair to move across, fixing of drywall and putting up specialty protection on doorways and openings to limit the damage from the wheelchair, shelving for her medical supplies, and if generous hearts are abundant, we could turn her bathroom into a handicap access bathroom with a shower or walk in tub. I am Lelia's friend and have known her for years, her needs have now come to my attention and i cannot walk away, counting my blessings while Lelia lives in an unacceptable living space standard. I, immediately started to wrack my brain to see how I, the town of Heppner, and all our friends can brighten Lelia's life. For our Heppner Dance Troupe Christmas Recital (I teach dance in Heppner), we will not be charging admission, but will take donations for Lelia's Project. If you see any of my older dancers in Christmas costumes around Heppner, they are carrying jars to collect donations, or you may drop by Sweet Productions Restaurant and Bakery or other businesses in Heppner where we will have donation jars. I'm starting this campaign just 2 days past Thanksgiving. At a time of year where we express our thankfulness of what we have, let us open our hearts and wallets to a woman who has little and asks for nothing. Perhaps we can make this a very Merry Christmas for Lelia. Thank you in advance for your generosity.