Tuesday, January 13, 2015
The GoBabyGo Project
Saint Louis University Program in Physical Therapy students Connor Chastain, Mallory Eggert, and Leah Fischer are teaming up with engineering students to bring the University of Delaware’s GoBabyGo project to St. Louis. GoBabyGo was started at UD by Cole Galloway to give children who have difficulty with mobility the opportunity to move on their own, allowing the children to interact with peers, facilitate brain development, and have fun. In order to do this, we are adapting small toy cars and customizing them to fit the child’s specific needs. For example, we add equipment, such as PVC pipes and straps, to help put the child in an optimal position to drive the car. We also add a button that is large enough for the child to push in order to make the car move. Additional modifications may be made in collaborating with the child, the family, and the child’s physical or occupational therapist. In doing this, we hope to give children the freedom and ability to have fun with family and friends, while exploring the endless possibilities of mobility.
It is very exciting for us to announce the completion and delivery of our first car. We were able to modify a car for a 2 year old girl with Cerebral Palsy, a condition that has affected her ability to move and use her arms and legs purposefully. The family reached out to us at a time of need and we were very excited to get started! We evaluated her needs and worked with SLU engineering students to adapt a smaller ride on car for her. PVC pipe, a strap for her waist, and a go button on the steering wheel were added to the car, along with rewiring the electric to allow the car to accelerate. When the car was delivered to the girl she instantly said, “I drive!”. She got a huge smile on her face. While in the car, she was able to work on cause and effect and move in her environment, instead of her environment moving around her. The more she drove, the more she was able to start and stop the car and turn the wheel. She was so excited and did not want to get out of it. Her mother began to tear up and said, “This is awesome. I never thought she would be driving away from me”. The simplest things can change someones life for the better. Be willing to be apart of the things that make the change!
Written by Mallory Eggert (DPT Class of 2015) and Leah Fischer (DPT Class of 2016)
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at 11:23 AM