Wheelchair-accessible space for Bay resident

2019-08-28 06:03
Derrick Stanley, a resident from Barcelona, who has been wheelchair-bound for three years.                 Photo:KAILIN DANIELS

Derrick Stanley, a resident from Barcelona, who has been wheelchair-bound for three years. Photo:KAILIN DANIELS

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A HANDICAPPED pensioner in Port Elizabeth received a new lease on life, thanks to a local construction company offering to make his property more wheelchair-accessible.

Suffering from diabetes, Derrick Stanley’s legs were amputated three years ago, due to the severity of his illness.

He spent three months in Livingstone Hospital after suffering from gangrene of the foot which led to a lower-extremity amputation of both legs.

Stanley has been confined to a wheelchair ever since.

As a goodwill gesture, Gravity Projects, a local construction company, offered to aid Stanley and have already started the building process.

A wheelchair-accessible ramp will be installed at his home in Barcelona, as well as a toilet.

Stanley said that after having struggled for the past few years, he will finally be able to move around with ease.

“My whole life changed the moment my legs were amputated.

“No one can really prepare for such a huge shift in your life.

“My wife is my main support system and she has to carry me to the toilet. At the moment, I can’t move around on my property as it’s not wheelchair-friendly. As a pensioner, I can’t afford to make any changes to my house.

“I’m so thankful to everyone involved. This will make my life so much easier,” Stanley said.

Owner of Gravity Projects, Patrick Bramwell, said the sturdy ramp would allow Stanley to enter and exit his home.

Bramwell added, “We are in the process of building a ramp, which will provide more space.

“The challenge for Stanley was the uneven paving and stones on his property. We will remove the stones to make the surface more even, and build a ramp.

“There will also be changes made to the back of his property to include a toilet as well.”

MMC for Economic Development, Tourism and Agriculture, Marlon Daniels, said that he saw Stanley’s plea on social media and Bramwell, who is also a Patriotic Alliance (PA) leader, offered his services.

“We as the PA first assess if the issue at hand is a ‘want’ or a ‘need’. Stanley’s issue is a need and that is why the PA decided to step in. I’m very grateful for Bramwell’s willingness to do this and also that this will make things much easier for Stanley,” Daniels said.

The ramp will be completed within a few days and the installation of the toilet will soon follow.

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