Student With Cerebral Palsy Couldn't Go On Class Hike, So Teacher Carried The Girl On Her Back
No child likes to be excluded from a group, especially when they really want to be part of it. Exclusion can result in feelings of sadness, confusion, loneliness, and other painful emotions.
Still, despite all the efforts made to include everyone, children with disabilities are often excluded from being part of a school program and extracurricular activities. But luckily, there are some devoted teachers who are willing to change that.
Helma Wardenaar, a teacher in Chicago, will do anything for her school kids. So, when the girl with cerebral palsy couldn’t participate in a three-day camping trip, the woman found a perfect solution.
Usually, Maggie Vazquez uses a walker, but school officials said it would not be an option. The trip was too long, and there were many fallen over trees and branches for the 10-year-old to go there.
Wardenaar learned about a $300 child carrier, Freeloader, that could hold up to 65 lbs and allow her to carry Maggie on her back. When the teacher showed it to the schoolgirl, she couldn’t be happier:
She was so happy, she was like, ‘Ms. Helma, I’m going on the trip too! I’m going to see some butterflies!’ She was so happy when she knew she was going.
With the woman's help, the girl went on hikes and explored the forest. The 38-year-old carried the schoolgirl for 2 hours every day. Sometimes, it was too heavy, but Maggie encouraged her teacher with positive words or songs.
No wonder this good deed went viral and attracted people’s attention. Just take a look at the heartwarming reactions posted:
Now this is beautiful!😍 Thank you so much for telling it😊 What a very precious story about two really amazing human beings!!— Her Insane Self (@InsaneSelf) June 11, 2018
I’m proud to have Helma as a coworker and Maggie and her sister are incredible people! The future is bright!— Aaron Fischer (@AaronFischer540) June 11, 2018
These are my favorite stories to write. Helma told me Maggie was so happy when she saw the harness and found out she'd be able to go!😩— CiCi Adams🌸 (@CiCiAdams_) June 11, 2018
Thank you so much for this! Inclusion and acceptance is so important when it comes to children and adults with developmental disabilities. This is amazing! My heart is so happy!! 💜— SilviaValencia____ (@SilviaDarling_) June 12, 2018
Thank you, Helma Wardenaar, for your commitment and devotion!