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Local Nonprofit Trailguides Collects 'Crutches 4 Kids'

DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. – Trailguides, a local support network for parents and children with special needs, will be running a donation drive called Crutches 4 Kids to benefit disabled children in other countries.  Crutches, canes, walkers and wheelchairs can be donated from Wednesday, Feb. 1 until Tuesday, Feb. 7 at all Dobbs Ferry schools.

“Some of these kids, they can’t participate in school, they can’t participate in their lives so it becomes a burden to their community and their family without mobility,” said Lisa Salvetti, who helped launch Trailguides in Dobbs Ferry three years ago.  “So it really changes a life.”

Last year the collection drive gathered 134 pairs of crutches and 20 canes to donate to countries in need. Trailguides gives to people with all different types of disabilities.

“Our primary mission really is to support families,” Salvetti said about when parents learn of their child’s special needs. “It’s a really hard, difficult time to understand the process and to know what to do with the information you’re given. We just try and connect people who have gone through similar situations.”

After being personally touched by special needs and disabilities, Salvetti said that was when she knew she wanted to do something to help others in similar situations.

“One of my children was evaluated as a preschooler and I felt like other people had gone through this,” she said. “Why do I have to go out and do all this research? I happened to have a friend who had been through it and we talked about it. We decided we should start something within the district.”

Mary McNamara, who has volunteered with Trailguides for the past three years, said the organization works “with children’s organizations around the world to determine where the highest need is and then based on the need they ship to those countries.”

McNamara said the beauty of Crutches 4 Kids, a nonprofit based in New York City, is that so many people have extra crutches sitting around their homes collecting dust.

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