Mankato Man And Other Volunteers Recycling Wheelchairs
According to the World Health Organization over 65 million people everywhere need a wheel chair due to a disability. And they don't have one due to cost.
Greg Olson near Mankato is one of many in Minnesota, trying to make a difference in this venture. According to the Mankato Free Press, he collects and stores no longer needed wheelchairs on his farm for shipment to countries such as Uganda, El Salvador and Ukraine. And he checks with nursing homes in the Mankato area if they have any old wheelchairs that are no longer needed.
Families don't often know what to do with the chairs, when someone no longer needs one. Any many different styles are needed, for adults and kids. Olson said he got involved after he heard about Joni Eareckson Tada speaking about her charity organization, Joni and Friends. An accident in 1967 left her quadriplegic and requiring a wheelchair for mobility.
Joni and Friends has collected 188,000 wheelchairs; 150,000 were shipped abroad since 1994 with the remainder used for parts. In Minnesota, they plan to collect 5,000 wheelchairs by 2020.
Olson takes in some walkers too.