I got a question in email from a reader about how to find a free wheelchair for seniors. And at first, I have to admit that I was stumped.
I had searched for “Free wheelchairs” and came up pretty empty. Then I decided to search from another perspective. And that was for “wheelchair donation sites”.
See, being that the cost is prohibitive, from hundred dollars and up…possible more if we are talking about a motorized wheelchair…the odds of getting a free, brand-new wheelchair are low.
But what about a refurbished one? That has better possibilities.
So with that in mind, here are a few options that I hope will help you. I will be listing them in alphabetical order.
They strive to provide used, quality wheelchairs to any individual who does not have health insurance or the means with which to pay for a wheelchair.
You need to submit an application, found at their website, plus proof of medical need for a doctor in order to start the approval process.
Provides wheelchairs and wheelchair ramps for those in need in Silicon Valley, Ca.
Chariots of Hope is a non-profit organization which recycles and distributes used wheelchairs WORLDWIDE. They do this at no cost to the recipients.
To start the process, go to chariotsofhope.org/requests.html and complete the application.
This charity is set up to provide powered wheelchairs to individuals who cannot afford one. Now, it is not a senior-specific charity, as it focuses mainly on those who are dealing with spinal cord injuries, but it cannot hurt for you to try them if you are in need of a powered wheelchair.
Direct relief works with free clinics throughout the United States and worldwide to provide medication and supplies, including free wheelchairs, to these clinics.
I would contact them and ask them where the nearest clinic was to you that they serviced and see what the eligibility requirements were for a free wheelchair.
Operating out of Stone Mountain, Ga, FODAC has helped over 25,000 people receive the mobility assistance that they need. They are focused more on the Atlanta area [they do not ship from their facility in Stone Mountain, Ga.] but they carry all forms of mobility assistance equipment.
An international organization specializing in mobility assistance for individuals throughout the world. They collect used wheelchairs and have distributed 98,000 throughout the world.
While this organization has more of an international focus, I would certainly contact them and explain your situation and see if they can help.
Operating out of Kansas, they take used wheelchairs, walkers and other mobility assistance devices and provide them to needy individuals for no charge.
A charity run out of Indianapolis, Indiana which focuses on accepting wheelchair donations and then matching up the donated equipment with people who need it.
Again, they are not a ‘senior-specific’ charity but they do provide wheelchairs to anyone in need.
They help people in the state of Oregon with manual and powered wheelchairs, ramps, grab bars and other forms of mobility assistance.
Another group focusing on the international community, it cannot hurt to call them and see if they can help you on an individual basis.
While they operate out of Wisconsin and provide mobility assistance to Wisconsin residents, this organization can arrange shipping to other parts of the United States under special circumstances.
I tried to make this list as extensive as possible. I am sure there are other organizations, and you can feel free to add information in the comment boxes below.
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