Free Wheelchair For The Disabled – How To Find The Help You Need

I got a question in email from a reader about how to find a free wheelchair for the disabled.  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 a 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.

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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.

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Free Wheelchair For The Disabled

Alternatives in Motion

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.

free wheelchair for the disabled

Chariots of Hope

Chariots of Hope is a non-profit organization which recycles and distributes used free wheelchair for the disabled WORLDWIDE.  They do this at no cost to the recipients.

To start the process, go to chariotsofhope.org/requests.html and complete the application.

Darrell Gwynn Foundation

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 International

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.

Friends of Disabled Adults and Children

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.

Hope Haven International

An international organization specializing in mobility assistance for individuals throughout the world.  They collect used wheelchairs and have distributed 98,000 throughout the world.

Kansas Equipment Exchange 

Operating out of Kansas, they take used wheelchairs, walkers and other mobility assistance devices and provide them to needy individuals for no charge.

LifeNets

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.

UCP’s Wheels for Humanity

Another group focusing on the international community, it cannot hurt to call them and see if they can help you on an individual basis.

Wheelchair Recycling Program

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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Comments

    • Linda Fletcher
    • December 10, 2015
    Reply

    Thank you for this awesome info. I Will be calling one of those for help.

    1. Reply

      Glad it helped Linda.

    • radio broadcasting
    • December 22, 2015
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    • Preethi
    • May 5, 2016
    Reply

    Required a wheelchair

    • Constance Hendrix
    • June 14, 2016
    Reply

    Thank You for providing this information! We’re in Atlanta GA and my mother is 72 and in need of motorised wheelchair medicare will not pay because Mother is in Hospice at home, her quality of life depends on her mobility.

    • Maria Lugo
    • June 21, 2016
    Reply

    Hi My name is Maria im 26 years old. im looking for information about where i can get a free wheel chair for my 85 year old father. I been taking care of his gor over 4 years now. i could berly work because he has to be watch 24/7 the insurance doesnt want to cover the wheelchair

    1. Reply

      Maria,

      Did you contact the agencies listed above? Also, I would call your local Office of the Aging to see what type of assistance they can offer.

      Warm Regards

      Tony Rovere

      • Bridget
      • May 10, 2017
      Reply

      Sometimes insurances don’t want to cover the costs. Find out the reasons they rejected the claim. Then ask for the documentation that covered the rejection. They are required by law to give it to you, at least in my state…but it still doesn’t hurt to ask. A lot of the time rejections are in the nuance of HOW the claim was submitted. The wording that was used. So by asking for the documentation you can find out if something was missing or written incorrectly. Then always appeal. (Sometimes just the threat of appeal, definitely the words you use and the tone you use as you say they words) will make a sympathetic claims persons tell you what you need to do to fix it, It takes time and is a pain but do it anyway. Use that time to gather information from you or your loved ones doctors about the need for a chair, the medical need, the quality of life need, etc. Ask them to write letters stating the patients need. Then if your insurance denies you ask if you can do an IMR Appeal (Independent Medical Review Appeal) if you can great, if not then you have every right to appeal to the state board. I would appeal to the state board and let your insurance company know that is what you are planning on doing. During my research I learned that the state board sided with the patient 80% of the time. It may not be that be that way in all states but takes work but if you continually fight them you start winning more often. Don’t give up, I was in the ICU and I refused to leave the hospital until I had a Walker, Shower Seat and some other thing and I was first told they could do that. I said well that’s fine, I’m not feeling all that great yet. Then it was well we can’t get it yet and they didn’t have shower seats. I replied, That’s ok, I’m sure by the time I’m feeling up to leaving they’ll be able to scrounge one up. That next afternoon, I had everything.

    • dave z
    • February 24, 2017
    Reply

    I have a bariatric wheelchair that I like to trade if possible for a smaller wheelchair to fit a 190lb senior male. any ideas as to where I could inquire about this

      • Tony Rovere
      • February 25, 2017
      Reply

      Dave, One of the places I found with a trade-in program was TopMobility. You can find out more at http://www.topmobility.com/trade-in-program.htm

    • Jo Ann A. Pullan
    • March 12, 2017
    Reply

    Hi! My name is Jo Ann. I just want to have a querry if you’re giving free wheelchairs in the Philippines particularly in Barangay Matiao? And is the shipment free? We have seniors and disabled persons. Just hoping I could help them. Thanks!

      • Tony Rovere
      • March 12, 2017
      Reply

      Jo Ann,

      I don’t have the wheelchairs. I write about resources that do have them. And unfortunately I only write about US resources.

    • toni
    • September 6, 2017
    Reply

    hi Tony,

    thank you very much for this valuable information!

    would you happen to have information on how I can get assistance with a stairlift?

    Thank you & blessings,
    toni

      • tony
      • September 7, 2017
      Reply

      Toni,

      101 Mobility is a great company. And they have options for both purchase and leasing the stairlift as well.

      Warm Regards

      Tony Rovere

    • Catalina Beserra
    • September 10, 2017
    Reply

    The razor I need one chair is because my Dad is diabetic also the amputation his left leg so that way he needs one to go back in moving around really appreciate your help thank you.

    • lisa D. Anderson
    • November 1, 2017
    Reply

    I am a left above the knee amputee and I have a big problem getting around my house and doing just daily chores by myself. I have had spinal surgery on my right side with my left 5th disk replaced on my right side. Right now I have been waiting 3 years for medicare to give me a new one. I have been having too many falls lately because of the gout in my right arm and trying to do things for myself. If you know of anyone that can help me in anyway to get a chair just until I can get one from them I would be more than appreciative and would give it back as soon as I get one so someone else can be BLESSED! I would love to keep ,y grandbabies again.

      • tony
      • November 1, 2017
      Reply

      Lisa, Did you try the resources above? There are the only ones I am aware of.

      Additionally, if you are having this much trouble reach out to your local Office of the Aging for assistance.

      Warm Regards

      Tony Rovere

    • Linda
    • April 29, 2018
    Reply

    I’m a recent bka below the knee amputee and I’d just like to take the time to say thank you for the info and resources. They don’t exactly give you a manual when they remove a limb, at least I didn’t get one lol. So it’s been very difficult in finding answers to questions I have especially the biggest one, how to get a more efficient wheelchair. As a 39 year old single mother Its hard to do everything need to do to care for me and my children in the hospital grade wheel chair I have now. Which, don’t get me wrong I’m very blessed to have one at all. but it is difficult to manoover in tight spaces and takes a lot of energy just to propel up a ramp myself and I asume it will only get harder with me having severe RA and Fibro It also doesn’t fit correctly, I’m afraid to get sores and I keep hurting my back and shoulders reaching behind me to get things out of the pocket because the back is so high. Also the front casters are so big it hits my leg a lot when the casters turn because the amputation is so low on my leg and it just kind of dangles there. and talk about heavy. its harder and harder everyday to put my wheelchair in the van myself. It’s getting to where I really don’t want to go out because it’s so difficult. I’m almost 3months out of surgery but had cellulitis so bad its still not healed and will take a couple more months they said if no more problems arise, so this has caused a lot of tissue and nerve damage hopefully I will be able to use a prosthetic when it’s time but I’m sure I will still be in need of a daily wheelchair…
    I’m going to check out the sites you’ve recommended and hope to find what I need. Thank you so much for this info that is really so hard to find out there on the internet. God Bless You!

    Linda

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