wheelchairs

Dome City Developments: Wheelchair / Walker Delivery Eases Disabled Hurricane Evacuees’ Frustrations – Rotary Command Center’s North Texas Connection – by Nan Wagoner

0 Comments 24 November 2009

The truck full of wheelchairs, walkers, canes and scooters that rolled into Dome City late Saturday afternoon brought with it hope of restored personal dignity to hurricane evacuees burdened with impaired mobility from injuries, disease or age. The overwhelming response to a call from Dome City’s Rotary Incident Command Center (IC) to a Bellaire Rotarian came from . . . North Texas. The ‘North Texas connection’ was activated when Bellaire Rotarian Nan Wagoner ran into trouble finding enough wheelchairs and walkers in Houston to meet Dome City’s evacuee needs and produced 38 wheelchairs, several electric scooters, nearly 150 walkers and footed canes, and other mobility devices for the victims. Houston / Dome City, Texas (PRWEB) September 14, 2005 — The truck full of wheelchairs, walkers, canes and scooters that rolled into Dome City late Saturday afternoon brought with it hope of restored personal dignity to hurricane evacuees burdened with impaired mobility from injuries, disease, or age. The overwhelming response to a call from Dome City’s Rotary Incident Command Center (IC) to a Bellaire Rotarian came from . . . North Texas. Houston Assistant Fire Chief Rick Flanagan was on hand to personally thank Pete and Sherill Berre of Wichita Falls, who drove nine hours to deliver the targeted items to the Dome’s Distribution Center in a borrowed truck. The load of wheelchairs and walkers were donated by churches and individuals in Wichita Falls, Vernon, Chillicothe, Quanah and surrounding North Texas communities. More than 3500 South Texas Rotarians provide our district with direct connections to hometowns all over the world who want to help victims of this disaster,” said Rotary IC head Suzi Howe. “In this case, because we needed mobility aids and cases of disposable gloves quickly our Bellaire Southwest club reached 500 miles north to volunteers and donors who responded in a truly amazing way,” she added. The ‘North Texas connection’ was activated when Bellaire Rotarian Nan Wagoner ran into trouble finding enough wheelchairs and walkers in Houston to meet Dome City’s evacuee needs. “I grew up in North Texas, and after Katrina hit, many long-time friends called and emailed asking how they could help us with the evacuees,” Wagoner explained. “This seemed like an excellent opportunity not only to tap into an additional relief-supply-source quickly but to give my hometown region a personal way to contribute,” she said. Berre recalled that he initially hoped that as many as five or six wheelchairs would be donated by his church. But after Wagoner contacted others from her high school graduating class who contacted area radio stations, more and more offers kept rolling in. “I couldn’t believe we ended up with 38 wheelchairs, several electric scooters, nearly 150 walkers and footed canes, and even some potty seats for the victims,” Berre said. “At least 30 people were delivering things to my house all day Friday before the drive down,” he added. Rotary internal command chief Howe was relieved she could cut red tape with the direct response from North Texas. “With our shrinking footprint as evacuees are moved out of Reliant Center, I’m glad we got these onsite in time,” she said. Houston Rotarians will man the Reliant Center IC through the expected closing of the shelter on Friday, September 16, by which time officials anticipate that most evacuees will have been transferred to less temporary shelter. President of Space Center Rotary, IC leader Howe is no stranger to producing concrete results. She was recently honored as Rotary District 5890s Assistant Governor of the Year for her work with the “Children of the Dump” in Nicaragua, and as President of Space Center Rotary she mobilized members to build park benches throughout the Clear Lake community. She serves as President of the Montessori Administrators Network for the Houston area, heads League City’s South Shore Montessori School, and as past president and current Foundation member of Armand Bayou Nature Center saw the center through hard times by bringing together community leaders to sustain the center. She will serve as this region’s Rotary District Governor in 2006-2007. Wagoner, managing counsel for Wagoner Burgert LLP law offices, recently chaired the Gulfton Immunization Initiative and in June was named Rotarian of the Year by Bellaire Southwest Rotarians. Bellaire Southwest and Space Center Rotary are two of 31,000 Rotary clubs in more than 165 countries that provide humanitarian services and promote goodwill around the globe. More information may be found for Bellaire Southwest Rotary at www.bellairesw.org, for Space Center Rotary at www.spacecenterrotary.org, and for the Rotary International organization at www.rotary.org. For more information or to request photos electronically that accompany news release, contact F. Nan Wagoner, e-mail protected from spam bots, or at 713-668-5680.

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