Wheelchairs for Children with Disabilities
- Wheelchair for Toddlers.
Bella’s Bumbas is a wheelchair that enables toddlers (like children affected by Spina Bifida) the freedom to move easily, be independent, and play with their siblings and other children. It is built with a Bumbo-like seat, some tires, and a wooden board.
Families may order one at no cost, except a charge for shipping, which is a fraction of what it would cost to purchase a typical wheelchair. Every dollar they receive goes directly towards the cost of building these chairs. Since the wheelchairs are not commercially manufactured, families must sign a waiver of liability.
When a child outgrows their chair, Bella's Bumbas also asks the family to donate it to another family.
For more information or to order, see
(Source: "One family's quest to bring a new kind of wheelchair to toddlers," CBS News, July 28, 2017)
- College students have designed what may be the smallest, lightest, and least-expensive wheelchair ever, with a PVC-pipe frame that can be adjusted as the child grows. Unlike many standard power chairs, which are wide and heavy, the BYU chair will not require remodeling a house or buying a new car. In fact, these wheelchairs can be folded and tossed, rather than mechanically lifted, into the trunk of a car.
For their mechanical engineering capstone project, four BYU students spent 2 semesters designing and building the wheelchair.
- Dimensions: 29.75" high, 13.5" wide, and 22.5" long. A standard power chair starts at 32x22x27.
- PVC Pipe: Longer pieces of pipe can be substituted to expand the chair for children up to 50 lbs.
- Speed: 4 mph. The team had the first prototype going much faster, but reined it in to match the standard power-chair speed.
- Weight: 20.5#. A standard power chair is 100-300+ pounds.
- Battery Life: 1.5 - 2 hours. A slightly heavier battery would last the whole school day.
- Cost: $490.40. The team beat the budget set by the project sponsor by a few bucks. A standard power chair runs $2,000-$7,000. (The Open Wheel Chair video claims the cost is under $400.00)
Instructions to build the chair are available for FREE online at
(Sweet Wheels, by Leah Davis, BYU Magazine, Summer 2015, p. 16)
- Donate your used bumbas by shipping them to
1170 Webster Rd
Webster, NY 14580