Joy over “wheelchair gift”

ANOTHER lucky recipient received the was given the gift of mobility this week at PNA’s ninth Wheelchair Handover. Sara Smal, who suffers from a broken back, broken neck, and damaged knees, was all smiles as she showed off her new set of wheels.

Lauren Lubbe and Sibulele Robi, from Frere Hospital’s Occupational Therapy branch, were there to help present the gift to Smal.

ON THE MOVE: Sara Smal received a wheelchair at the ninth PNA Wheelchair Handover on Tuesday. Present at the handover are left to right: Lauren Lubbe, Dries Smal, Sibulele Robi, Gussie Eberhardt. In front: Dominic Spittal, Smal, and Darrel Eberhardt
Picture: AMANDA NANO

“With all the years she’s been with Frere, she hasn’t always been a patient of Occupational Therapy, so we’ve only had the pleasure to know her for almost a year now,” said Lubbe.

She said Smal was unable to have corrective surgery due to medical reasons. “She has had a fusion before but all the plates and the screws have now been coming out of the bone. Because of all these mechanisms that are broken and damaged, she battles a lot with walking.”

“It was such a joy that I could phone her last week and say: ‘”We’ve got you a wheelchair!’”

Smal will not be forgotten by the hospital now that her wheelchair’s arrived. “Everything for this wheelchair is on tender so we’ll be able to ensure a continued maintenance plan for many years to come, until we cannot salvage the wheelchair and from there we will be able to replace it in a timely manner,” said Lubbe.

Smal’s husband, Dries, was just as emotional when he stood up to thank PNA and the Sweethearts Foundation for their donation. “It’s a heartbreaking moment to get my wife here to get her wheelchair. Thank you very much, we appreciate it.”

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