Wheelchair accessible swings taking group home in Cheektowaga to new heights

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) —“Some people who use wheelchairs can get out of their wheelchairs and maybe sit in a swing but some people cannot. Their wheelchair provides them not just mobility but the ability to sit up straight and have proper alignment so to remove that person from their wheelchair doesn’t give them the support they need,” said Helen Trowbridge Hanes, Aspire of WNY Vice President of Community Living.

Angela Kaznica has depended on her wheelchair for more than a decade. She has spinal meningitis, and as a result she’s also deaf and learning disabled.

“She walked, she rode a bike, she swam, she did everything that we could possibly do and up until about 15 years ago they had to do a surgery because she was losing the ability to walk,” said Emily Kaznica, Angela’s mother.

But now Angela can ride again, thanks to special wheelchair accessible swings made possible by her mother Emily, who has been legally blind her whole life.

“We’re all individuals with or without disabilities and our lives should be enjoyable to their fullest,” said Angela’s mother.

The non-traditional swings cost more than 4 thousand dollars to purchase. Each can hold up to 800 pounds.

“To have a swing that you can use when you stay in your wheelchair is very exciting because you get to do what everybody else in the world is doing and that’s what it’s all about,” said Trowbridge Hanes.

Aspire of WNY is also kicking off a fundraising project to purchase additional wheelchair accessible swings for their school in Cheektowaga.

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