Catalyst Project

Catalyst Project

Facilitating wheelchair services through faith-based hospitals in low-resource countries.

Unless clinics and hospitals have a reliable supply of appropriate wheelchairs, it's impossible to provide quality care to those who cannot walk. In many countries, there is no reliable supply of pediatric chairs. We've tried many times unsuccessfully to find options for pediatric chairs. Now, thanks to Josh Smith and Invigorate, new doors are opening. It's a privilege to collaborate with him!! It would be great if you could consider supporting this! Starting with children throughout East Africa, Ethiopia and Guatemala this plan has huge global potential. Please consider supporting Josh and Invigorate as this initiative raises start-up funds. It's exciting to be part of this! Together we can initiate this reliable and sustainable local supply of wheelchairs for the children waiting in isolation. 

Daniel is seven years old and never had a wheelchair. Because of your help with a shipment from Hoggi in Germany, he was able to get one from the great BethanyKids team. So fun to see his smile!

Daniel's story also illustrates difficulties

The rather unexpected trip to Guatemala was amazing. It was lovely to see Josh, Luke, Joab, Mark and Jeff planning together. While we were there we did the first planning steps for a research trip and family camp in June. We even met the Guatemalan minister of health thanks to Esther and Mark. Just to make things more dramatic, there was a small earthquake while we were there.

It’s winter here. So cold!! It’s been around 20 degrees below zero Fahrenheit for a week (right around -30 C). I took the fence picture on a really cold morning walk. And we have months of this ahead of us.
During this cold dark time when we have had plans disrupted over and over, I have found it very easy to lose motivation. Especially if that motivation was aimed at completing a specific task or achieving a goal. Why even try anymore? What’s the use and what hope is there anyway?

Blog December 17th, 2021

As I was growing up my father frequently talked about what he would be doing when he retired. He didn’t like his trade (he was a stone mason and a brick layer) and he didn’t like Edmonton, the city he grew up in. His retirement dream was moving to and building a house in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. From there he expected to make trips to Golf Courses in the area on what sounded like a daily basis. I wonder if even Tiger Woods plays golf every day.

Good news! Check out the flags - we're having encouraging interactions with these countries.

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  • Unexpected interactions with dedicated people in Turkey and Macedonia were so fun! Rewarding to link them to resources they hadn't known about, and I'm learning from them!
  • Encouraging news - two rehab people are planning to visit our partners in Aswan.
  • The bigger news has to do with serious goup zoom meetings with leaders in Angola and Uganda. These are major new initiates. It's excited to be able to be involved in facilitating! It was fun to link OM in Angola with ShonaQuip and listen to subseqeunt planning.  It was also exciting to connect staff with BethanyKids Uganda with Florence and the Mukisa foundation.
  • More big news. Serious conversations are going forward regarding taking steps toward making a BeeLine facility in Kenya to address the chronic need for pediatric chairs.  Pray especially that Josh, David, Luke, Mark, Solomon and Skip will keep moving forward to make this possible.

 

I think it was nine years ago Marci Dittmer came with her daughter Melanie to check out LeTourneau University where I was working as Associate Professor of Biology.  Melanie came to LeTourneau, then traveled to Kenya with me doing research on wheelchair function (she stayed some extra weeks to work with a study on predators).  Now Melanie is graduating as a veterinarian - congrats Melanie!!  Marci is taking a graduate writing course. One assignment was to do a profile article. She asked me for an interview. Her article got published!  Congratulations Marci!!  I thought you all might enjoy seeing Marci's work.

Marci's story in Light Magazine

River

Good news!  The wheelchairs you've helped with are finally getting to the children who need them.

Ralph, Pete, Elizabeth, Jack and Rosie received chairs from CLASP.   Finding the funds took time since CLASP required a minimum number of chairs per order required. The shipment was also delayed during Covid, and fitting chairs was delayed due to Covid restrictions in Kenya. 

Rachel. Walter, Kevin and George have BeeLine chairs.  We started the process to get these chairs to Kenya in 2017!!!  Thanks for all who helped make this possible.  They finally arrived in January this year. 

Persistence is finally bearing fruit and joy is beginning as children are being fitted.  Thanks for your help and prayers.

waiting

Good news! BethanyKids made the deadline for the first step of an application to the Assistive Technology Impact Fund! It’s a fund from the UK looking for those with innovative ideas to get quality wheelchairs to those who need them. BethanyKids and BeeLine wheelchairs want to make a facility which will make BeeLine chairs locally. They also intend to collect and form recycled plastic into some of the parts.

It was such a privilege to do a seminar with International Christian Medical and Dental Association (iCMDA).  Their seminars are definitely a good thing that came out of Covid!  iCMDA is connected with people doing medical work in many countries, people with big hearts to bring hope and help through appropriate clinical care.

Praying that God will bring good things from the information in the seminar so those at the seminar can reach out with good care to those experiencing disability!