A group of Freedom Wheels champions recently received their new customised bikes at Kew Traffic School.

Four children and their families were thrilled to receive their fully tailor-made and customised bicycles and zipped around the course with plenty of smiles and laughter.

Gandel Philanthropy provided a Community Grant to Solve Disability Solutions to customise bicycles and through that improve the mobility, independence, social inclusion and physical health of children with a disability.

Solve were able to provide even more children with Freedom Wheels bikes by subsidising bikes for those experiencing financial disadvantage and providing “Loan Bikes” so that children are able to ride a customised bike while they wait on NDIS funding for their bicycle.

Gandel Philanthropy provided a Community Grant to Solve Disability Solutions to customise bicycles and through that improve the mobility, independence, social inclusion and physical health of children with a disability. Solve were able to provide even more children with Freedom Wheels bikes by subsidising bikes for those experiencing financial disadvantage and providing “Loan Bikes” so that children are able to ride a customised bike while they wait on NDIS funding for their bicycle.

The event was attended by 4 children and their families, Shawn Stevenson of Victorian Department of Health & Human Services, Solve Disability Solutions CEO Doug Haig and their team of Occupational Therapists, as well as team members from Gandel Philanthropy.

What is Freedom Wheels?

Freedom Wheels custom builds bikes to meet people’s individual needs. Solve’s highly skilled and innovative team of therapists, engineers and volunteers modify standard bikes using a range of specially designed support components. These components, including a wide range of outrigger wheels, hand, foot and upper body supports, are made to be detachable to allow transport and storage of the bikes.

The customisation process begins with an individual assessment of each child to identify the bike, components and modifications suited to their age, height, weight, type of disability and physical and cognitive abilities.  This assessment process is carried out by a Solve Disability Solutions Occupational Therapist, supported by Solve technical volunteers and occurs during bike clinics conducted regularly at Solve Central Office in Melbourne and regional centres around Victoria.  Input from the carers and therapists (or health care professionals) form an important part of the assessment process.

Once the individual needs of the child are assessed, the team of Freedom Wheels technical volunteers build the bike and fit the individually prescribed and measured supportive components. When the bike is built, the child and their carers return to Solve to trial it and have final adjustments made.  The bike is then available to take home. 

For more information about the Freedom Wheels customised bike service, and upcoming come and ride days in your area, visit Solve Disability Solution’s website: https://www.solve.org.au/freedom-wheels

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