2009 Stories

Liberia March 2009

Dear Joe,

Warm greetings to you from Liberia!! The picture on this page is from the village of Jarmue in Bong County. I was able to deliver the PET wheelchair to the young man I told you about. I was in Jarmue  back in the Fall of 2008 and he asked me for a wheelchair that he could operate by hand. He is in the second grade and attends Jarmue United Methodist School. His house is about a half mile from the village and he as to go up a hill to return home. Because of this, he was unable to “push” his two wheeled wheelchair up the hill and was dependent upon others to push him to and from school. This made him to  not be constant in attending school resulting in him being 21 years of age in just the second grade!! My heart went out to him….for his commitment to go to school in spite of his mobility obstacle. I am so happy Operation Classroom was able to donate a wheel chair to me to take to him.

I visited him on  March 11 to give him the chair. Above are some pictures of him on the chair. He said “THANKS AND  GOD BLESS YOU”. I join him in saying thanks to you and to Operation Classroom for all that you are  doing to proclaim Jesus through your actions!!

Blessings, Mary

* Zoegar is a fictitious name to protect the identity of this young man.

Zoegar's old wheelchair and PET

Zoegar's old wheelchair and PET

Zoegar Learning to Ride PET

Zoegar Learning to Ride PET


Sao Tome July 2009

Because of PET’s long time partner, Hope Haven International Ministries, in IA, another organization (now a part of HHIM) has delivered PETs to Sao Tome. Report came from Lisa Murphy, CEO of HHIM/Mobility NW, based in WA State. Sao Tome and Principe represents the 77th country PETs have gone to. It’s a two island country off the west coast of Africa. Sao Tome stands for Saint Thomas.

“Her name is Candid Frenanda. When I met her she was crawling on her hands and knees and claimed she was walking by a man’s home who was known for doing witchcraft and fell to the ground and has not walked since, she was 6 years old at the time. She is 30 years old now. She did not want a wheelchair, many houses can not accommodate them, she will use this to go shopping, and to the river to do her laundry. As you can see by the smile on her face she is very, very happy to have this new mobility. A joyful woman. I will send you all the other photos I have.” Lisa Murphy, CEO of HHIM/Mobility NW, based in WA State.


El Salvador October 2009

Early in 2009 we began communications with Humberto, Chief Executive, of Association for Human Development (ADHU) in El Salvador.  He contacted Von Driggs, our director of operations.  Tony Gasbarro of Alaska helped facilitate communications and was there to witness one of the distributions.  One of our Affiliates/production shops filled a 40’ shipping container.   ADHU got clearance to receive the shipment duty free and organized another NGO to receive and help with the process.  200 PETs were sent in July.  PETs were fitted in October, and in December we received a dozen pictures of a ceremonial distribution.  An El Salvadorian state legislator, who has both legs amputated, was so impressed that he has spoken of covering the cost of another shipment.  We hope to send more PETs in 2010.

“Attached are pictures taken on the day that the PETS were allocated both to individuals and leaders of remote communities. The event took place in municipality of San Antonio del Monte very close to Sonsonate, the largest city in southwestern El Salvador.  You will find Sonsonate on most maps of El Salvador.

The assembling of the PET was a how to demonstration carried out on the stage in the plaza for those who were taking them back to their villages unassembled.  Those taking the PETs back to their communities for distribution had to sign for them.

When you look at the pictures, let me know if you have questions.  Sincerely, Tony January 23, 2010”