It’s Not Just A Chair On Wheels | Rachael’s Story

Rachael is sitting in her manual wheelchair outside to the side of the camera frame. She is smiling at the camera, wearing glasses, a yellow shirt, black pants, and combat boots with hearts going down the front. White text on a teal square reads "It's not just a chair on wheels."

It’s not just a chair on wheels. It’s independence. It’s health. It’s freedom.

This year marked two key moments for Rachael: a move away from home and her first semester at Kansas Wesleyan University, where she studies psychology. While the chair helps her get to class, it also gives Rachael the freedom to do what she loves — making art, spending afternoons in the park, or going to the mall with friends.

Teal, blue, and white graphic of a quote from Rachael that reads: This is gonna give me my freedom. It’s independence to do things by myself that I otherwise wouldn’t really have the opportunity to do without asking for help. I’m really excited for it.

Rachael’s disability makes balance tricky, and being on her feet can be painful and exhausting. She needed a seating system that addressed her needs: comfortable to sit in for long periods, light enough for her to lift in and out of her car, and easy to navigate around campus. The problem was that Rachael’s insurance would not cover a new chair, and the out-of-pocket cost was unrealistic.

Our occupational therapists and technicians at the Wheelchair & Posture Seating Clinic evaluated Rachael’s needs and assembled a chair for her using a donated frame. CPRF’s Equipment Fund, meanwhile, covered the cost of other customizations. Light wheels, aluminum casters, and a foldable design make Rachael’s chair uniquely hers.

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