Geeks for Kids invites professional engineers, college roboticists, high school robotics teams and other geeks to modify electric, toy cars so that little kids with mobility challenges can play with others and explore their environment on their own. When you get involved in Geeks for Kids, you’re signing up for more than a friendly (beat your competitions’ pants off) competition. You are signing up to empower kids with mobility limitations to move, play and explore independently – perhaps for the first time in their lives. And, in the process, you build cool cars, enrich your resume and build your team. It’s a win-win for all involved.
Over 500,000 American kids under the age of five have mobility issues, and few have access to devices that give them free movement. Most insurance programs only provide electric wheelchairs for kids who are five years old and up, and few parents can afford them. Electric wheelchairs cost approximately $17,000 each. This lack of independent movement severely limits younger kids’ interactions with their environment and with other kids.
Geeks for Kids changes the way these kids experience their world. We give the kids a chance to move about and explore freely – not experience life as passive observers from strollers and wheelchairs. It also gives these kids a vehicle that excites and engages their peers and encourages them to play together.
Build Cool Cars
In 2019, we built a dozen customized cars for kids with mobility challenges. This year, we hope to raise the funds and recruit pros to help us build up to 24 cars.
The kids’ challenges vary. Some cannot walk. Others can stand and even walk with crutches or other aids. Some cannot use their hands effectively or at all. Some can only move their heads and necks. Our goal is to customize a car for each child’s specific needs.
Building these cars is an ultra-cool tech challenge. You choose an existing toy, electric car. Then, you design a way to make this car work for the kid you adopt – stripping it down and building it up with the coolest and most functional tech you can think up to make it easy for your kid to move, learn and play. To learn more about how to do this, read about the car our high school robotics team and our mentors built last spring: Colson’s story.
Strengthen Your Team
Many of our designers, builders and programmers come as a team from local engineering and software companies and robotics organizations around the city. What better way to build your tech team’s spirit than send them out to do great things for kids? Geeks for Kids will get your teams thinking outside the box, working together and striving for the thrill of doing good. Sure, the jocks have the Olympics and Corporate Challenge, but your geeks will build the tech that could one day save the world…or, at least, make a huge difference in kids’ lives.
Send one team or twenty. Just send your best!