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Church raises money for third world mobility

Published: Wednesday, July 3, 2013 11:20 a.m. CST • Updated: Wednesday, July 3, 2013 11:51 a.m. CST
(Aaron Gunsaulus)
Joshua (left) and Caleb (right) Gunsaulus use the hand carts, or Personal Energy Transportation wheelchairs, to get a feel for how they will work in developing countries.

Becky Vos, the co-director for Newton Christian Reform Church, said this year’s vacation Bible school donation project was one of the more interesting she’s been a part of.

Children attending the Bible school raised over $600 for specialized hand carts for disabled individuals. The three-wheeled bikes use a chain attached to the handles to to pedal the cart forward. Because they don’t require electricity, the carts are perfect for disabled individuals in third world countries.

Vos has been part of vacation Bible schools for almost ten years, and she said she grew up in the Newton Christian Reform Church and considers it her home.

To inspire the students at vacation Bible school, the creators of the bikes from Leighton loaned some to the students to try out.

“It’s a spontaneous thing that we wanted to raise money for the kids,” Vos said. “The kids loved riding those bikes.”

The $600 was able to buy two carts for two adults in undeveloped countries. Vos said the carts are ideal for such countries because of their sturdiness and large rubber tires.

“They’re really very fun to ride on,” Vos said. “But that’s not their purpose. Their purpose is actually for people in undeveloped countries to get around.”

Pastor Aaron Gunsaulus said that his kids in particular enjoyed riding the bikes around and knowing that the donations went to helping those that can’t walk.

“That’s the neat thing, this offering was really from the kids,” Gunsaulus said.

The kids were aware during the Vacation Bible School that their offerings would be going toward the carts and helping disabled individuals in developing countries. Vos said that even though they didn’t know to whom or where the carts would be going, they prayed for the individuals that would receive them.

“We showed them clips out of the DVD and they saw the people that couldn’t walk,” Vos said. “Some of their problems could have been fixed if there were resources, but they’re in situations where that’s not possible.”

Vos said that they plan on collecting offerings for the carts again next year.

“Since they could see it and touch it and ride it, they could really see what it was going toward,” Vos said.