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Parenting and Using a Wheelchair

Using a wheelchair doesn't change much about being a parent. Using a wheelchair while tending to babies and children may look different to someone who is unaccustomed to thinking adaptively but most parts of it are just the same. All parents experience the feelings of love, care, concern, joy, frustration, and the struggle to make the best decisions.

A parent who uses a wheelchair may need to give a little more time to planning ahead or thinking of adaptive ways to do things. Some of the resources below will get you in touch with the valuable experience and ideas of others.

Adaptive Parenting Resource

  • The Family Village - an excellent parenting site with a well-developed section for parents with disabilities.
  • Focus on the Children - by Ann Sunderlin, March '98, Paraplegia News
  • Let's Play Project - All children need opportunities to discover and actively explore the world around them. This project provides families with ways to play through the use of assistive technology.
  • Parent Support Groups - The Parent Empowerment Network
  • Parents with Disabilities Online - the Internet's one-stop resource for parents with disabilities.
  • Parents with Disabilities - STAR - a Pennsylvania grant-supported project (Federation of Independent School Alumnae [FISA] and PUSH) creating opportunities and equal access for parents with disabilities. 
  • Through the Looking Glass: A federally-funded center that focuses on the issues of adoption; pregnancy and birthing; custody and intervention with parents with developmental disabilities; and baby care equipment and adaptations.
  • V.O.I.C.E.S., Inc. non-profit organization for families with children who have communication impairments and the professionals who chare for them.
  • Women with Disabilities - a loose-knit alliance of women in the US and Canada.

Parenting and Child Development Resources

Women with Disabilities

  • Center for Research on Women with Disabilities (CROWD) - a resource at Baylor School of Medicine for women with arthritis, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, and the linger effects of stroke.
  • Women with Disabilities - at the National Women's Health Information Center - 800/994 -WOMAN or by TDD 888/ 220-5446. Locate resources for abuse, parenting, and sexuality and general resources about critical health issues for a variety of disabilities, including physical, neurological, hearing, speech, and visual impairment. It will also provide information on psychiatric, learning, and developmental disabilities.
  • Women with Disabilities - a loose-knit alliance of women in the US and Canada.

Other Useful Things for Parents to Know

Last Updated: 3-2-2006

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Contact information:
  Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology  Telephone: 412.624.6279

 © Copyright 2006 University of Pittsburgh. All rights reserved.
No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to WheelchairNet and the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology.

Please note: This information is provided a archival information from the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Wheeled Mobility from 1993 to 2002.

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