History of the The Wheelchair Project
First Annual Wheelchair Race May 1, 2000 -- Photo Coverage
You may be interested to know about the history of our program. Here's how it all began.
In October 1999 16 year-old John Doublestein, then a junior at Lawrence North High School in Indianapolis, wrote to Indiana First Lady Mrs. Judy O'Bannon proposing a plan to organize a system to collect and encourage the donation of wheelchairs in the Indianapolis community for use by people in other countries where they are not readily available. John was working toward rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts. He wishes to see this wheelchair donation plan to continue perpetually. John currently attends Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana.
He asked the First Lady if she might be able to refer/connect him with an organization that could partner with him, help publicize the effort and provide a convenient drop site for donors. The First Lady's Office contacted LifeNets to help John in his efforts to realize his goal.
LifeNets agreed to help out.
We have met with John and asked him about how we can work together to make this plan work.
On Wednesday March 8, 2000 John Doublestein along with Victor Kubik made a presentation to the Indianapolis Northeast Rotary Club about the Wheelchair Project and asked for support.
The legacy of John Doublestein's idea continues as we go on with collecting wheelchairs and ship them around the world. Two large shipments by container to Ukraine and Malawi, Africa were made in May and June 2002. Previously we had sent wheelchairs to Lithuania and the Island of Tonga in the Pacific.
LifeNets still accepts wheelchair donations.