Living in a 1,000 square foot apartment, the Copp Family committed to their dream of providing an accessible home for their two boys, Calan and Lawson. Their boys depend on mobility devices like wheelchairs and posterior walkers due to a rare mitochondrial disorder which makes it difficult to receive much support. The Copps had their eye on a home that had been completely gutted on the inside and left vacant to be turned into the perfect wheelchair accessible dream home!
TV Show Fixer Upper Created Accessible Living Space for the Copps
In order to make their vision a reality, the Copps sold their previous home and fought hard to save and fundraise to get closer to purchasing and implementing their plans. It was a leap (or roll) of faith as they learned to function in the even less accessible confines of a small apartment.
"Caring for our boys was especially challenging for us living in a small apartment without room for the boys to maneuver inside. We had to be their arms and legs when they needed us," Melissa says, "But we never lost sight of our dream and it was worth all the sacrifice." Their dream became a reality as Chip and Joanna Gaines, along with Tim Tebow, joined forces to design and build a home that has become the Model of Accessibility. The Copp family's episode of Fixer Upper aired on January 30, 2018, and has since launched a movement called Raising Wheels.
"We were so grateful and excited to see our boys finally accessing their world because of our new home and wanted to pay it forward, making accessibility a reality for everyone who needs it," Jody Copp enthusiastically explains. The tagline, "Accessibility is not a Luxury, it Should be for Everyone, Everywhere!" is at the core of the Raising Wheels Campaign.
Raising Wheels Campaign Strives to Raise Awareness and Empower the Disability Community
As it happens, the year previous, Jody and Melissa had teamed up with author Melanie Davis, creator of The Triumph Books—a series which highlights stories from people overcoming adversities and finding joy—to write the third book in the series with the title RAISING WHEELS. The Copps intended to share the stories of people who are accomplishing great things living life on wheels, as well as pass along the guidance from parents who are raising differently abled children.
Melanie Davis, who is also the founder of the publishing company of the series, Triumph Press, says, "I can think of no better way to help parents raising children with special needs while at the same time increasing awareness of the need for accessibility than to compile a book of stories that will inspire absolutely everyone who reads it!"
The Triumph Book: RAISING WHEELS will be released Spring 2019, with a special pre-release opportunity for those interested in purchasing a copy before its official release date.
The Copp family begins the book by sharing their journey towards reaching their accessible dream home, honestly revealing their challenges and breakthroughs, including the opportunity to be selected for the reality show, Fixer Upper, and meet Tim Tebow.
From there, the book unfolds with story after story from people who have overcome seemingly insurmountable physical challenges to enjoy incredible accomplishments, such as traveling the globe in a power wheelchair to photographing exotic animals in remote places, to regaining abilities and even finding hidden talents which are changing the world. Many parents are featured in the book who show the joy of raising differently abled children and teach what steps should be taken upon first diagnosis to ensure the most accessible life possible, making RAISING WHEELS a much needed and virtually non-existent guide for parents.
Just recently, the Copp family was selected to receive the Impact Award at a special gala in Dallas hosted by Variety, The Children's Charity of Texas, for bringing awareness to the need for better accessibility for the differently abled through the formation of the Raising Wheels Foundation. Its mission is to provide resources and inspiration to assist parents to RAISE differently abled children to become enabled and empowered individuals and to RAISE the public's understanding of the need for accessibility. Variety, The Children's Charity of Texas also presented the Copp Family with a $1,000 donation check to benefit the Raising Wheels Foundation
If you would like to see a virtual tour of the Copp family's Model Home of Accessibility featured on Fixer Upper, learn more about the Raising Wheels Campaign or subscribe to receive original, inspiring articles through the Raising Wheels blog, visit RaisingWheels.com. Help us keep the mission of better accessibility rolling by learning more about the Raising Wheels Foundation at RaisingWheelsFoundation.org.
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