My name is Joe and this is my son, Austin. I am an active duty military member and a single father living in Tampa, Florida. My son Austin was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy at age 7. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is a devastating muscle-wasting disease that strikes about 1 in 3,500 boys. They gradually lose the ability to walk, feed themselves and to breathe. This disease is currently untreatable, incurable, and 100% fatal, often by late teens early twenties. While there are promising treatments on the horizon, there are still many needs for families such as ours; that insurance just doesn’t cover. I am currently working towards the purchase of a wheelchair accessible van for Austin to help with transporting him around town so his world doesn’t close in on him. Additionally, a van would assist us in getting him to and from school and to his many medical appointments.
I currently transport Austin by lifting him in and out of my truck. Then I do the same with his mobility scooter and tie it down in the back of the truck. Since I am single father and have to work, my 70 year old Mom has become a tremendous help with caring for Austin. She actually has a lift on the back of her car for his scooter. Which helps but it constantly breaks down and leaves them stranded. She then has the added difficulty of getting Austin from his scooter into her car. This is not an ideal or safe process for either of them. Having a wheelchair accessible van would alleviate many of the difficulties and hazards we face every day while trying to care for Austin.
The Jett Foundation matching gift program is designed to help families like mine to afford expensive adaptive equipment like the accessible van I need. The wheelchair accessible van I am planning on purchasing is $40,000, an amount that I could not possibly afford. Add to that, there are the additional medical expenses and home renovations needed to make our house accessible for Austin. But thanks to the Jett Foundation Matching Gift program, once I reach my fundraising goal of $20,000, they will match my funds making the impossible possible for Austin and I, by buying us this much needed van.
We have been strong since Austin's diagnosis but sometimes being strong is knowing when to ask for help. This would be a life changer, not just for Austin but for our entire family.
Thank you for helping us reach our goal and please help spread the word about Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.
-Joe and Austin
Thank you in advance for your donations!
Your contribution to this matching gift program is tax-deductible to the extent allowed under applicable law, and is an unrestricted contribution to Jett Foundation Matching Gift Fund. Your contribution will be combined with other donations to ensure that families like mine, in need of essential items, will benefit from your generosity. If other resources have already been used to meet a specific need, if there is no longer a specific need, and/or if donations have been received in excess of a specific need, donations made in furtherance of a specific need will ve applied for general purposes of the Jett Foundation Matching Gift Fund. If the Jett Foundation Matching Gift Fund no longer exists, all donations will be applied to further the general charitable mission of the Jett Foundation.
Donating through this website is simple, fast and totally secure. It is also the most efficient way to support my fundraising efforts.
Many thanks for your support -- and don't forget to forward this to anyone who you think might want to donate too!