KMTV News Now // July 18, 2017

Mom receives van for special needs child

By Andrea Braswell, KMTV News Now

A mother and daughter got a big surprise today with a gift that will help ease the load.

This is the van mom drove in today, with her daughter Neji's wheelchair strapped to the back.

"Lifting her in and out of the car in her wheelchair gets pretty tough."

It's tough because Jordan Tolestedt was involved in a car accident while she was pregnant, which left mom with back injuries and Neji with Cerebral Palsy.

"It takes a lot of time in the mornings to get that wheelchair on that lift, put the cover on.”

“Then get her in her seat, drive ten minutes to her daycare and do it all over again."

All that changed when Tolestedt contacted Chive Charities.

Braun Ability and Heartland Mobility teamed up and donated this wheelchair accessible van to Tolestedt. It will help make it easier for her and Neji to get around.

"Neji's got a million dollar smile and it’s just a wonderful thing to see her so happy, and see Jordan relieved of some of the pressure of trying to get Neji around."

The 2017 Dodge Caravan will also help Neji become more independent.

Her mother will no longer have to assist getting her in and out of the car.

"We want her to be more independent, so she can get herself out of the van and back into the van.”

“It just makes her feel so much better."

It's valued at about 56 thousand dollars, and Tolestedt is taking it home at no cost.

"Everything is absolutely free and it's just an awesome thing."