Lola Needs Your Help!

Dear Friends of Say Hola Lola,

One year ago, someone told me about Friendship Circle’s Great Bike Giveaway because she thought Lola would be a good candidate to win an adaptive bike. Well at that time Lola was so close to being able to push the pedals of her small Radio Flyer tricycle that I honestly didn’t think she would need an adaptive bike. I let the idea go. Yet here we are one year later and, unfortunately, Lola still doesn’t have the hang of pedaling a bike. She needs help. She needs help that can only be given to her through the use of an adaptive bike. At school she has an opportunity to ride an adaptive bike which she loves and is able to do so unassisted. Her physical therapist feels she would greatly benefit from having an adaptive bike at home as well, but the reality is an adaptive bike is expensive. In fact, the type of bike she uses at school can cost $3,000 or more. That’s a lot of money for a bike. So how do we choose between giving our daughter the freedom of riding a bike like every other kid in the neighborhood or breaking the bank? Well, thankfully, there are organizations like Friendship Circle that understand the financial constraints an adaptive bike can bring to a family of a child with disabilities. Every child deserves a bike. Lola deserves a bike. That’s why we’re asking for your help and all we need is your vote.

Voting opens March 8th at 12:00 pm and will end March 30th at 12:00 pm.

Friendship Circle is a Michigan-based nonprofit that provides quality programming and support for individuals with special needs. In 2012, Friendship Circle began the nationwide Great Bike Giveaway for children and teens with special needs because they felt that every kid deserved a bike, no matter the circumstance. Unfortunately, most of our kids with disabilities need an extremely expensive bike and, quite often, insurance companies won’t cover them. Families of children with special needs already incur many costs whether it’s for medical appointments, medications, dietary restrictions, life skills adaptations, therapies and more. An adaptive bike seems like a great idea, but not compared to the other necessities. Yet a bike can bring independence, confidence, therapeutic uses, freedom and so much more. Friendship Circle allowed 600 kids to register for the giveaway. Each registrant had to choose an adaptive bike out of ten bike choices. The top winner with the most votes in each bike category will be declared the winners. But Friendship Circle would like to see all 600 kids receive a bike which is why they are trying to raise enough money so that each child will be a winner!

Voting opens March 8th at 12:00 pm and will end March 30th at 12:00 pm.

Lola has faced many challenges in her life due to an extremely rare genetic syndrome called Bosch Boonstra Schaaf Optic Atrophy Syndrome (a result of the NR2F1 gene mutation). To date, she is one of only 35 individuals in the world who has been diagnosed with this syndrome. She has struggled with epilepsy her entire life, she has severe vision loss and she is globally delayed, but in spite of all of these challenges…she has never given up. She is the most resilient person I’ve ever met. And she always remains happy. Her infectious smile and personality can brighten the worst of days. Many of you have watched her grow up through this blog. You’ve seen her blossom over the years. You often ask how you can help Lola. Well this is a perfect way to show your support. We are asking that you vote for Lola and share this information as much as possible. If you are sharing information on Facebook, make sure your post is “Public” and use the hashtag #bike4lola. Send it out on Twitter — I’m Twitter illiterate which is why I’m asking you to do this! Ask your friends, neighbors, family members, co-workers, and anyone else with access to a computer. Please know we wouldn’t ask if this wasn’t important. Lola’s lengthy legs are getting to be too big for her Radio Flyer tricycle. She needs assistance. What a wonderful gift an adaptive bike would be to her and we thank Friendship Circle for giving us this opportunity. Now let’s get Lola a bike!

Thank you.

Meredith & Rob

into the wild