Woodstock volunteers build wheelchair ramp for McHenry family

Woodstock Kiwanis Club, Marian Central High School Key Club members pitch in

Brittany Keeperman – bkeeperman@shawmedia.com A group of volunteers from the Woodstock Kiwanis Club and the Marian Central Catholic High School Key Club build a wheelchair ramp Saturday, Nov. 26, 2016, for the Green family, whose 5-year-old son, Easton, has cerebral palsy.

McHENRY – Kristin Green will have a much easier time getting her 5-year-old son, Easton, out of the house for trips to school and the doctor, thanks to a group of Woodstock volunteers.

Green’s son has cerebral palsy, a disability that stems from brain damage that affects motor functioning, muscle coordination and body movement. The Greens’ McHenry home didn’t have a ramp, and insurance wouldn’t cover the cost to get one installed, so they began searching for nonprofit organizations that could lend a hand.

“We tried a couple different organizations, but they are so busy. Everyone is always doing stuff,” Kristin Green said. “We looked at the financial aspect, but we make too much to qualify for assistance – but they don’t look at the medical aspect of what his journey and life takes.”

The Woodstock Kiwanis Club and members of the Marian Central Catholic High School Key Club stepped in to help with the project and build the ramp Saturday morning. The service club started under new leadership in 2015, seven years after the former Woodstock Kiwanis Club dissolved.

Alan Arbuckle of the Woodstock Kiwanis Club has been part of various service organizations, including Habitat for Humanity and multiple Kiwanis clubs, for more than 30 years. He was on the scene Saturday helping with the ramp.

“Service is a bit addictive,” he said. “Once you start, you’re always looking for something to do.”

He added that the ramp the club was installing could easily cost more than $10,000 and was donated by a school, which helped keep project costs down.

Ann Bush, 15, a Marian Central sophomore and a member of the Key Club, said she liked to volunteer because it feels good to help people.

“They are always so nice,” she said. “They appreciate so much when we help them.”

Kristin Green, who has a sprained back because of how often she has to carry her 40-pound son around, said that the ability to roll the wheelchair out of the house and to their vehicle will be amazing. Linda Glasscott, Green’s mother, takes care of her grandson during the week and said it will make a world of difference.

“This is going to be really different for us,” she said. “It’s fortunate that we have such a strong family and a strong, small core group that gets us through what we need. It’s been quite a journey, but he is a great kid. He’s got an awesome personality.”

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