It’s Go-Time at FVTC for Go Baby Go!
Electronics club students modify cars for children with mobility limitations
He’s only 19 months old, but Myles Hill already has his first set of wheels.
“It’s a huge blessing,” explains Myles’ mother Lisa.
The Hill family came from their home in Clintonville to Fox Valley Technical College to take delivery of an electric Lamborghini ride-on car for Myles. But this is not your ordinary ride. It’s a battery-powered vehicle that has been customized to remove mobility challenges for Myles. The car is made possible through a partnership with Children's Wisconsin and Go Baby Go!, a nationwide program dedicated to helping children with special needs gain independence by having their own customized vehicle.
Eligible families start the process by meeting with FVTC Occupational Therapy faculty and staff from Children’s to determine what modifications would be most helpful for the child. Engineering Technologies students involved in the Electronics Club then build the cars and make necessary adjustments.
“These are regular cars we buy off the internet and we have schematics to wire them accordingly,” says Aaron Daane, Electromechanical Technology instructor and project advisor. “So instead of a foot pedal, they’re using a push button on the steering wheel. Other modifications could be a five-point harness, extra padding, a head restraint or other customizations.”
Children’s and Fox Valley Technical College began to grow this partnership in the summer of 2022. One year later, the first round of vehicles are ready. Student Carlos Luna is happy to get these cars rolling off the unique assembly line.
“I might as well use my knowledge to help other people,” Carlos says. “We can start with something as basic as a car, but those kids will appreciate it. I know they will be happy with the car. They will feel that warmth in their hearts from people caring about them.”
Three families recently took delivery of their vehicles, including the Hill family. Myles’ brothers are thrilled they get to help their little brother tool around the neighborhood.
“When they found out Myles had Down Syndrome, they were worried they wouldn’t be able to do some of those things like ride a bike,” Lisa says. “They get to teach him how to use this, he gets to go along on our bike rides, our walks, and it gives Myles a bit more freedom, too, so they can see that he’s just like every other kid.”,
Check out the photo gallery below and see how local journalists recently featured the Go Baby Go! program.
FOX11: FVTC students help create custom wheels for kids with limited mobilities
WBAY-TV: Go Baby Go! gives child with special needs his own set of wheels
NBC26: Go Baby Go! empowers children with special needs through free electric cars
Spectrum News1: Fox Valley Tech students modify cars for Go Baby Go! Program
Post Crescent: Children with mobility needs get kids cars from Children's Wisconsin, Fox Valley Tech