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Electric Cars for Children with Mobility Challenges

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Electric Cars for Children with Mobility Challenges

Madison, Wisconsin - Volunteers from the University of Wisconsin and UW Health’s American Family Children’s Hospital will create opportunities for children with mobility challenges to explore their world independently by adapting electric ride-on cars at an event on Saturday, April 2.

“Go Baby Go” is a collaboration among UW Health physical therapy and occupational therapy and University of Wisconsin engineering students. The volunteers retrofit the electric ride-on cars with a light-weight, easy-access switch to power the car and to provide necessary support and safety features.

“Research shows that movement and exploration drive learning in the first three years of life,” said Annie DeMark Thompson, manager of the UW Health outpatient pediatric rehabilitation program.

Each car is adapted for the individual child to give them the skills to navigate.

“It’s incredibly exciting to watch the interdisciplinary collaboration to adapt the ride-on toys,” said Karen Patterson, faculty associate in the University of Wisconsin doctor of physical therapy program. “It’s no longer about disability for the children. It’s about fun and exploration.”

The customized cars are provided at no cost to the families. Grants from Endres Manufacturing Company, Friends of UW Health and American Family Children’s Hospital support the event.

Date Published: 03/21/2016