The Knights of Columbus and the Wheelchair Foundation recently teamed up to help bring wheelchairs to those that lack freedom of mobility.
Founded in June 2000, the Wheelchair Foundation buys up to 10,000 wheelchairs a month. They are distributed around the world with the help of distribution partners including the U.S. government, United Nations organizations, and nongovernmental organizations from the Red Cross to Rotary Clubs, and now the Knights of Columbus.
In 2003, the Knights of Columbus began a working relationship with the Wheelchair Foundation and sponsored 2,000 wheelchairs to be distributed in Afghanistan. In 2004 and 2005, the Knights sponsored another 2,000 chairs for distribution in the Middle East, Philippines and Mexico. In 2006, another 2,000 were distributed in the Philippines, Mexico and Poland.
For every donation of $75 the foundation receives, it provides matching funds to purchase a wheelchair for $150. The chairs are shipped, 280 at a time in massive containers, directly to the destination nation; at last count chairs have been distributed in 143 countries at no cost to the recipients.