Resthaven Care Center resident Bonnie Braun never thought she would be riding a bike again. That was until Aubrie Meunier, Resthaven's Recreation Therapist, decided that she shouldn't give up that simple pleasure, and motivated friends and coworkers to help purchase a wheelchair bike.
"I just smile and smile when I'm riding that bike," states Bonnie. "I love the wind in my face."
The wheelchair detaches from the bike allowing easy transfers on and off. With the chair positioned in front, the rider's view is unrestricted providing a wonderful sense of freedom. It enables residents to be able to get out and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. And, studies have proven that biking can decrease depression in the elderly.
"I love the independence and joy it provides by giving each Elder an individual ride," Aubrie says. "A favorite stop is the nearby ice cream shop."
Aubrie continues, "Our staff and the families of Resthaven residents were our number one supporters. I set up bake sales, soup fundraisers, and spread the word through my friends and family. Both the Big Boy Restaurant and Priority Health helped out. It was awesome how many people banded together to make this possible!"
"I love being outdoors and I wish I could ride that bike every day," states resident Neil Dykema with a grin. "My favorite part is sitting in front and waving at everyone I pass!"