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A young girl with Spina Bifida regains her mobility with the help of her homemade wheelchair and inspires her family to spark a movement.
Bella was born with Spina Bifida, a congenital spinal defect. She spent the first three months of her life hospitalized. Everywhere Bella went, she had to be carried or was placed in a stroller. During a visit with her aunt and uncle, Rebecca Orr and Marty Parazynski, they realized how much she was affected by her lack of mobility, and they wanted to help get Bella moving on her own.
Rebecca and Marty began researching online for an answer. After finding some promising instructions, Marty got to work. By using spare parts, two wheels from a child’s bike, and a “Bumbo” child seat, Marty builds Bella’s first wheelchair. With her new wheels, Bella gained her independence and began interacting with her siblings in ways she couldn’t before. Her family was blown away by the improvements they saw.
Bella’s Bumbas Beginnings
After seeing the joy in Bella’s eyes, Rebecca, Marty, and Bella’s dad, Jeff were inspired. Wanting to share the same freedom with other children, they created Bella’s Bumbas. A charity that allows them to build and donate wheelchairs to kids worldwide.
Building a Partnership
As the number of requests grew, Bella’s Bumbas needed to find a reliable source for their wheelchair wheels. They reached out to Walkin’ Pets by HandicappedPets.com. Inspired by the Bella’s Bumbas story and wanting to help, Walkin’ Pets agreed to donate the wheels needed for every Bella’s Bumbas built. Since that first phone call in March of 2017, Walkin’ Pets has donated a total of 1,156 wheels, enough wheels to build over 575 wheelchairs.
On a recent visit to the Walkin’ Pets headquarters in New Hampshire, Jeff, Marty, and Rebecca had the opportunity to spend the day with the Walkin’ Pets staff. They were strengthening the bond between the partnering companies, touring the facility, and making plans for the future of their partnership.
Making the most of their time in New Hampshire, Bella’s Bumbas had one more stop on their NH trip. With five brand new wheelchairs in hand, the Bella’s Bumbas team drove to Derry, NH. NuDay Syria collects donated clothing, medical supplies, and other goods to provide aid to Syrian refugee camps. Sending between 2-4 shipping containers packed with supplies overseas to Syria every month. The wheelchairs donated by Bella’s Bumbas will be included in the next shipment to Syria. Instead of wrapping the donated wheelchairs in packing material, these chairs are wrapped in blankets and clothes, hoping to provide some much-needed comfort for the refugee children. This is the second time Bella’s Bumbas have given wheelchairs to NuDay Syria, and the plan is to continue to help Syrian children.
Since its creation, Bella’s Bumbas has built over 600 wheelchairs. They have shipped wheelchairs to 48 states and 22 countries worldwide. Through their kindness and generosity, they have changed the lives of countless children and their families. Never charging for the wheelchair, they only ask that families cover shipping costs and commit to passing the wheelchair along to another family when it’s no longer needed.
Hear the Bella’s Bumbas team their story in the video below:
To learn more about the amazing work done by Bella’s Bumbas, please follow them on Facebook To learn more about NuDay Syria, please visit them here