Mrs. S. called LIFE, Inc. because she needed a wheelchair ramp for her son, who was having a very difficult time getting into and out of their apartment with his power chair. LIFE jumped into action to help this family out. For more than 20 years, LIFE has been building permanent wheelchair ramps for people in need who reside in the organization’s 11 county service area. But sometimes, people only need a ramp for a short period of time.
In 2015, LIFE, Inc. was able to purchase a temporary ramp for this purpose and just before Christmas of that same year was able to install this temporary ramp for a young man who only needed one short term. LIFE partnered with GAP Ministries and the United Way of Effingham County to make this happen. In many respects, this was a dry run for a new collaborative program created for folks living in Effingham County, who find themselves in need of a temporary solution in order to continue living independently in their own homes.
It became apparent that this program was needed in other counties as well, so LIFE garnered the funds to purchase a second ramp, but did not own a facility large enough to store it when not in use, so the hunt began. Fortunately, the Savannah Lion’s Club stepped up to the plate and graciously agreed to allow LIFE to store the recently purchased temporary ramp at their facility, and less than a week later, LIFE received the call from Ms. S. asking for help for her son. The timing was almost perfect!
LIFE’s Home Modification Manager, Mark Swift jumped into action, coordinating the schedules of four individuals who would help put together and install the temporary ramp for this young man. This proved to be no small feat and what made it even more challenging was the fact that before the ramp could be installed, a representative from AMRAMP, the ramp manufacturer, had to train LIFE’s contractor on how to assemble the equipment correctly.
And then it happened. On October 24th, everyone came together to make this dream a reality. Once the job was done, Ms. S.’s son was finally able to enter and exit his home with no problem. His happiness and gratitude was very obvious as he continued to flash smiles of contentment to his mother and to a group of community partners who came together to make his dream come true. LIFE is indeed good, but we couldn’t do what we do without our community partners!
Pictured from left to right Steven Blitch, Jake Deveaux, Neil Ligon, Mark Swift and Scott Blitch.