Some of the money raised at the fourth annual Rick Hansen Wheels In Motion event Sunday (June 11) in Georgetown will go toward making a local girl's home wheelchair-accessible. Forty per cent of the funds from the event, held for the first time in Halton Hills, will be directed to Bethany Winter, who has been appointed the Honourary Ambassador Child for the event, set to run between 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. at the Gellert Centre Community Park. Registration is 9 a.m. Bethany was born with congenital occipital encephalocele, a neurological disorder. Her mother, Carla, said her daughter is globally developmentally delayed and physically challenged. She has a learning disability, is mobile in a wheelchair and is medically fragile. "She is very social, friendly and loving," said Carla. "She is fully integrated into a Grade 5 classroom setting with a fulltime educational assistant at Limehouse Public School, where she interacts wonderfully with the other children and staff. "She is a gift to us, a miracle, the joy of our life," said Carla. Due to the many unique challenges Bethany faces and the impact they have had for herself and those who care for her, she requires her own personal living space to accommodate her special needs, said Carla. "It is our hope to design and build for her a haven she can call her own in our home which will allow for the necessary safety provisions and specialized equipment for daily living." Carla said the renovations will include a main floor bedroom and bathroom, an elevator system that will take her to ground level where she will have a living room, computer room and playroom. It will also include access to the outdoors at ground level to a paved driveway. The Wheels in Motion event is geared to people of all ages and abilities who are invited to wheel, walk or run to raise funds and awareness to improve the quality of life of men, women and children with a spinal cord injury. Welcome speeches and warm-up exercises will be held between 10 a.m. and 10:30 p.m., with the run/walk/wheel or roll 1 km or 10 km event running from 10:30 a.m. to noon, followed by a prize presentation. There will be hot dogs and refreshments available. Also there will be a health products display and information booths in the atrium, an outdoor display of wheelchair accessible automobiles, children's activity area, face painting, a comedian and music. Activan transportation will be available for disabled persons and seniors free of charge. To arrange a ride call the Town of Halton Hills Public Works department at 905-8732601 ext. 2610 today (Wednesday). For donation forms and to register for Wheels in Motion visit www.rickhansen.com.
Bethany Winter was joined by Halton Hills Accessibility Committee member Maria Smorong (left) and Garry Gore, co-chair of the Rick Hansen Wheels in Motion Committee as they presented t-shirts donated by The Label Factory to Limehouse Public School students for the kids to wear when participating in the upcoming Wheels in Motion event at the Gellert Centre Sunday.