Builder retrofits home free of charge for 12-year-old paralyzed girl
CTVNews.ca Staff, with a report from CTV Edmonton’s Nicole Weisberg
Published Wednesday, March 6, 2019 11:48AM EST
After she was paralyzed from the waist down during a hiking accident last summer, a 12-year-old girl is finally able to freely move around her house in her wheelchair thanks to the generosity of a custom home builder.
In July, Hailey Cheng was hiking in Kananaskis, Alta. with extended family when she slipped on some rocks and fell over a waterfall. She fractured her skull, broke her back and severed her spinal cord.
Although she survived the fall, the Grade 7 student was permanently paralyzed from the waist down. Since the accident, Hailey has had to adjust to life in a wheelchair and manoeuvring around her family’s Sherwood Park home.
“I can’t go upstairs now and some areas are really hard to get around because it’s so crowded,” she told CTV Edmonton in December.
Three months later, Hailey won’t have those difficulties anymore after custom home builder Alair Homes retrofitted her home to make it accessible.
“We’ve got the chairlift installed, all the new flooring done, her bathroom is completely revamped so now she has accessibility through her bedroom,” Paul McGavigan, a partner at Alair Homes, said on Tuesday.
The home building company learned about Hailey’s story on a GoFundMe page established to raise money for the family and offered to retrofit their home free of charge.
“We’re very grateful, incredibly grateful,” Hailey’s father said when the family viewed the changes for the first time on Tuesday.
With a big smile on her face, Hailey was able to take the newly installed chairlift to the second floor of her home. She even did a spin in her wheelchair in her new spacious shower, which is easily accessed from her bedroom.
The Cheng family said they’re still trying to raise money for a wheelchair-accessible vehicle to replace their current SUV, which is now difficult for Hailey to get in and out of.